Small Classroom Setup

Discussion in 'General Education' started by WarriorPrncss, Jun 13, 2015.

  1. WarriorPrncss

    WarriorPrncss Companion

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    Jun 13, 2015

    So... I accepted a teaching position, 4th grade, and I saw my room last week.... it is SO SMALL... Any tips for how to make it feel bigger and how to arrange the furniture for maximum functionality?

    Sidenote: I'm allowed to paint and all the walls are pretty much covered in a funky blue colored chalkboard paint. I figured painting EVERYTHING white might make it feel more open?

    Any tips are greatly appreciated!:thanks:
     
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  3. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Jun 13, 2015

    Can you post pictures of what you're working with?
     
  4. OneBerry

    OneBerry Comrade

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    Jun 13, 2015

    White sounds like a good idea. Do you have any pictures of the space? Do you know what furniture will be provided for you?
     
  5. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Seconding that furniture is important. I have a tiny classroom, too, but with the furniture I have and the amount of desks I need to fit in, there isn't much I can do in terms of different arrangements.
     
  6. SleekTeach

    SleekTeach Comrade

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    Jun 13, 2015

    If you google image search minimalistic classroom it may give good ideas. I think you're biggest challenge will be keeping it clutter free.
     
  7. Backroads

    Backroads Enthusiast

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    Jun 14, 2015

    Hah! I'm still figuring this out. My last classroom was huge and my current one is not.

    What I've picked up:

    Avoid clutter. If you don't need the furniture, get rid of it. I entered to find stupid shelving I has no use for. Gone. Make the most of existing shelving. Example: I'm converting what I can to electronic copy, which means less stuff to file. I use the remaining file drawers as... drawers. I keep teacher binders in there. Still plenty accessible, looks less cluttered.

    Indeed, use white or another light color of paint. Consider painting one wall another color to stretch in another dimension.

    Experiment with different ways to arrange student seating. Consider a less bulky teacher desk.
     
  8. TeachCafe

    TeachCafe Companion

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    Jun 15, 2015

    I feel you. I too will have a 4th grade classroom and it seemed really small. Maybe because the summer school kids in it were really big :eek: I don't know. But my current school has pretty large classrooms.

    I was itching to walk in it but it was a quick tour and I didn't want to disrupt summer school. But I so wished I had a tape measure in my bag.

    My first thought was :eek: this is small
     
  9. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Jun 16, 2015

    My room is pretty small, or at least it feels small, so I can relate.

    Here's what might help:
    - Get rid of the teacher desk. I use a kidney table, a small bookcase from Ikea, and a two drawer file thing for my teacher area. The kidney table of course doubles as my small group table.
    - Get rid of any unnecessary furniture. What kind of storage do you have? That might be the trickiest issue.
    - To maximize bookshelf space, much of my library is organized by author's last name and just put on the shelves like regular books at the library or bookstore. I color code with labels I got from Lessons with Laughter on TPT. The rest is in tubs, but the tubs are sideways on the shelves. Using all bins or tubs would take a LOT of room.
    - This year, I had 7 groups of 4 desks so I could do Kagan cooperative learning groups and it just took up WAY TOO MUCH room. Next year, I am switching to tables. If you have desks (which you probably do), I would make large table groups - probably at lest 6 in a group. Of course, this also depends on your class size, but I see you're in CA, so my advice probably still stands.
    - If you don't have room for a classroom library, you can make a whole group meeting area that doubles as the library. I used to have bookshelves under my whiteboard at my last school to maximize space. (I still have a whole group carpet area in 5th - I know not everyone does in upper elementary.)
    -Avoid all clutter, including clutter on the walls. You may want to invest in some plastic drawers or shelving.

    How dark is the blue paint? I think light blue would actually be very nice.

    Also, congratulations! I am partial to 5th, but 4th is also awesome! California history is fun!:D
     
  10. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Aficionado

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    Jun 17, 2015

    I feel claustrophobic when I walk into classrooms with wall-to-wall furniture (believe it or not, ladies and gents--some teachers actually want all the extra furniture they can get their hands on.

    Yellowdaisies has a great idea: getting rid of the teacher desk is something I did during my last year as a classroom teacher! It freed up quite a bit of space!
     
  11. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Aficionado

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    Jun 17, 2015

  12. WarriorPrncss

    WarriorPrncss Companion

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    Jun 17, 2015


    Thank you!

    I saw a pin on Pinterest about using a kidney desk that doubled as teacher space and work area. I plan on using that idea.

    I think I have desks... I problem is that the adjoining classroom is being re-floored and ALL of the furniture from that room and one other is in my room. So... no one is sure what belongs where. It won't be too bad, though, as I will only have 24 students.

    The blue paint is a tealish-green chalkboard color... it's awful...

    I can't stand clutter so that won't be a problem.
     
  13. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Jun 17, 2015

    That sure sounds like an odd color of paint...yuck.

    If ALL the furniture from both rooms are in your room right now, there's a really good chance the room is actually bigger than you think it is! Nothing makes a room look smaller than excess furniture!

    24 fourth graders in CA - wow! I've never heard of such a thing, and I've lived in So Cal and Nor Cal. If you want to do groups, you could easily do 6 groups of 4 or 4 groups of 6, depending on space.
     
  14. Arjun Singh

    Arjun Singh New Member

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    Nov 7, 2017

    Can you please share the images so that I can give you a idea?
     
  15. WarriorPrncss

    WarriorPrncss Companion

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    Nov 11, 2017

    This was over 2 years ago. I went with white walls, and 4-6 desk size student groupings.
     

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