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Old 06-26-2006, 07:52 AM
kimrandy1's Avatar
kimrandy1 kimrandy1 is offline
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 2,181
classroom themes

My classroom has never had a theme. I'd never even heard of such a thing until reading the discipline thread that is on the elementary board right now, and I'm intrigued. I want to do a theme this upcoming year. I've read that some people have a jungle theme and some have an underwater theme....any other good themes out there? And what, exactly, reflects your theme in your room? Your discipline chart, your helpers chart, your name tags? Anything else? Can you give specific examples for titles for boards and such? Thanks!

Old 06-26-2006, 08:17 AM
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MissBanger MissBanger is offline
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 64
South Carolina
Hey Kim!
This upcoming year will be my first so I do not have any expert opinions. However, I am planning to do a Medieval Theme in my classroom (I will be teaching 3rd grade). I have gotten some great ideas on the posts for my theme. My classroom will be "Third Graders in Shining Armor" or "Lord and Ladies of the Third Grade" (I haven't decided yet). Our newsletter will be called "The Herald," our helpers will be "Squires" or "Pages." I am going to have a cardboard box that looks like a castle in our reading area for the students to enjoy reading. The entrance to our classroom will be a drawbridge made of cardboard and rope. I haven't decided about the discipline chart..maybe something with archery? I'm still thinking on that one. Name tags will be something Medieval with "Lord" or "Lady" in front of their name.
Like I said, I am no expert yet but maybe by giving you an example of what I am doing will help you see how themes are done in the classroom. I hope it helps!
Old 06-26-2006, 08:54 AM
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yclark yclark is offline
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 282
Medieval Theme

That sound so cute. I'd like to see that.

Your discipline chart could be a pocket chart, call it a map of the kingdom, with pockets labeled or numbered for each individual child. Insert diecut castles with different colored flags. Green flag-all's well in the castle. Yellow flag-warning. Red flag-Trouble (with whatever consequence you have) Blue Flag- Note Home, etc.

Depending on how the die cut works, you might just post everychild's name or number on a castle and make flags on straws or popsicle sticks. That would be easier to change throughout the day.

If you stay with the archery theme, you could make a large target. Put everyone's name or number on an arrow made from tagboard and hotglue a clothes pin to the back. Start the day with everyone's arrow on the bull's eye and have steps to move it to the outer rings as they are needed. Each ring could coincide with a consequence in your behavior plan.

This being your first year, you might not know about the use of numbers. Assign everyone a number for the discipline chart, cubbies, etc. Then when children move in and out you reassign the number and don't have to remake the castle and all the labels in the classroom. (It also helps keep the discipline private. The kids learn everyones number but parents and other visitors to the class don't need to know everyone's business.)
Old 06-26-2006, 09:00 AM
yclark's Avatar
yclark yclark is offline
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 282
Some other post on here suggested checking proteacher.com
I looked there and there is a whole section where people have shared their theme ideas too.
Old 06-26-2006, 09:52 AM
MissBanger's Avatar
MissBanger MissBanger is offline
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 64
South Carolina
WOW YClark.. thanks for your ideas!!! I really may use one of those!!!

I will have to look at proteacher.com too!

Old 06-26-2006, 11:29 AM
Missy's Avatar
Missy Missy is offline
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 3,224
3rd Grade Teacher
There are some great jigsaw puzzles of castles, etc. I sometimes start the year with a completed puzzle that is glued together as part of a bulletin board display, then later in the year I have one for the students to work on at indoor recess.
Old 06-26-2006, 02:14 PM
Upsadaisy Upsadaisy is offline
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 17,699
There is a ready-made BB set of castles. Also, check the middle school posters and stuff for medieval stuff. You might find something that isn't too mature.

My theme affects the color scheme in the room, and the tone of the room. Mine is 'warm' and rustic. I wouldn't add in anything permanent that is in pastels, or is too modern.
Old 06-26-2006, 03:02 PM
MissBanger's Avatar
MissBanger MissBanger is offline
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 64
South Carolina
Upsadaisy, what is your theme?
Old 06-27-2006, 12:39 PM
Andrea L's Avatar
Andrea L Andrea L is offline
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 815
3rd Grade Teacher
I've done themes in the past, but then find that I get tired of the theme and want to change it every year. I end up spending WAY to much money because I get so involved in it. I've done a Hawaiian Theme, a Western Theme, and a Suzie's Zoo theme. This year I'm going to try something different. I'm going to use the same border throughout my classroom and buy the same color of material and put it up on all my bulletin boards. Maybe then I can use it a couple of years in a row and just change the borders or something. I can't afford to spend a couple hundred dollars on decorations...
Old 06-27-2006, 02:37 PM
TeacherRW's Avatar
TeacherRW TeacherRW is offline
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 564
This year I am doing a sports theme. Last year, I had a racing (NASCAR-type) theme. I have also had: stars, TAZ, and bees. I do like to change things every year and try to limit my theme to a few dollars that come out of my stipend monies.

Another place to look would be ReallyGoodStuff (dot) com They have some great themes as does Carson-Dellosa.

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