Cheap Classroom Decor?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education Archives' started by MrsV, Jun 27, 2007.

  1. MrsV

    MrsV Rookie

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    Jun 27, 2007

    This is my first year and I am gathering materials for my classroom.

    I have a few posters, but not very many. I do not want my classroom to look empty.

    Do you have any ideas on decorating a classroom on a budget? Maybe even a place to get free or low price posters?

    Thanks!
     
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  3. Ms. Jane

    Ms. Jane Companion

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    Jun 27, 2007

    I'm sorry I don't know where you can get free posters, but I am sure that there are plenty of teachers in your school who would let you borrow some of their posters and other materials that they are not using. A lot of teachers have so much stuff that they keep some of it in storage at the school. Ask some of the veteran teachers if you can borrow one or two things that they are not using.
     
  4. ksteach

    ksteach Rookie

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    To be honest, it is just going to be pricy. I didn't buy a whole lot of things, make sure that none of the other teachers in your building are not going to give things away.

    I am going to leave my classroom blank on purpose this year. I spent all this time at the beginning of the year last year decorating, and then ended up taking it down three weeks later to hang up student work, and things relating to our studies.
     
  5. funeoz

    funeoz Comrade

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    Jun 27, 2007

    teachingtolerance.org has free posters
     
  6. Mrs.Rhinochunks

    Mrs.Rhinochunks Companion

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    I am going to make a lot of my decor with butcher paper and black line masters. I like things to be the same and so if I make it myself it has a continuity to it.

    I did order some things from Carson/Delosa but still feel that I can have a great room with my own work and student work.
     
  7. Kteacher06

    Kteacher06 Companion

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    Jun 27, 2007

    One of our Kinder teachers made a huge caterpillar will paper plates on her wall. Each plate had the upper and lower case letters in the alphabet. It was so cute and easy to make. You could make this or use the idea with a different topic (numer line, phonics concepts, etc).
     
  8. MelissainGA

    MelissainGA Groupie

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    There are lots of websites where there are charts available that teach a concept. What I did is went to the website, printed the chart on a color printer in "draft" mode (still had color and didn't use as much ink) and then mounted them on construction paper and laminated them. Instant posters for my wall that also served the purpose of being "teaching materials".
     
  9. January_Violet

    January_Violet Comrade

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    Jun 27, 2007

    The Dollar Tree has a few educational posters and supplies. If your town has a Dollar Tree, check there. Wal-mart also have items that are of great use. I found an inexpensive pocket chart there. If you need books for your shelves, check the Goodwill. Plants also fill empty spaces as well as the $20 area rug from Wal-mart.


     
  10. Superteacher81

    Superteacher81 Comrade

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    I didn't have squat my first year either. I ended up borrowing a lot of my mentor's things that she wasn't using and at the end of the year she ended up letting me keep the stuff (she had been teaching forever and was going to retire soon). But I also found great deals at Wal-Mart, Target, and sometimes you can find a Dollar Tree with a teacher section. Definitely ask other teachers what they aren't using or getting rid of.
     
  11. TXTCHR29

    TXTCHR29 Cohort

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    I had one wall dedicated as a place to hang up individual student work and the rest of the walls were bare at the beginning of the year. I do this intentionally because I like to add things to the walls that we have done in class (poems, word families, nursery rhymes, charts, graphs, etc.) the walls get full very quickly and the decor is meaningful to the students!
     
  12. hdavidson

    hdavidson Companion

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    Jun 27, 2007

    I like to make mine! I change themes quite often and I find buying things like calendars, abc, posters, etc. gets expensive if I want it to match my theme (and being OCD ;-) ) I like everything to match. I have found that I would find good posters in different catalogs (or online) and "copy" them to my theme. It does cost some ink, but for the most part I can do it at school, even during the summer, and don't have to pay for the ink or paper. I can't remember what program it is, but you can make posters that are poster size, not letter size.... Does anyone know the program, is it print master???? Also years ago I went with demin for my table cloths and inexpensive colorful material for my BB so I never have to change it out and it doesn't fade!
     
  13. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Jun 27, 2007

    If you have access to an overhead, you can do this:

    Take a look at greeting cards or children's books and choose some illustrations you like. Trace them onto a transparency. Then tape butcher paper up on a wall, and trace the picture on the paper from the overhead. Color, or let the kids color before school.

    In the years when I have time, this is how I do Christmas decorations... I do one big enough to cover a good part of my back wall. The kids love it, and even HS Seniors get into the spirit and color.
     
  14. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    Jun 27, 2007

    The Dollar Tree stores carry teacher stuff for a dollar. I have bought many posters and banners for a dollar or two for a dollar. They also have stickers, alphabet lines, bulletin board border, and other teacher stuff. It changes frequently, so I try to go every other week or so. Check the freebies post and send off to the sites listed. Some of them take a while to come in, but I have received great things; posters, bookmarks, resource books and more.
     
  15. Tbelle1035

    Tbelle1035 Cohort

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    Besides your own decorations, have patterns ready so your students can help decorate the first day. 20 big yellow school buses cover a lot of area! I put mine across the long windows and they really add a lot. You can pick a different theme each month!

    Or have the custodian string a wire from one corner of the ceiling to the other (diagonally) and hand their work up there using clothespins. Again, you can find something new every month or to complement your theme.
     
  16. teachersk

    teachersk Connoisseur

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    I had one wall in my room devoted entirely to student artwork. I had some plain pieces of white construction paper at our "art center." The students would rotate through "centers" and could choose just to draw. Typically the drawings didn't have any restrictions - and I just let them free form. I ended up with mother's day drawings, school drawings, super hero drawings, everything. It turned out to be the greatest. Though, this year I plan on laminating them before hanging them up because by the end of the year they were all curled! But, a wall full of student artwork is one of the best ways to decorate! It is very student centered, the kids are proud to see their work, and it's great when parents come for parent conferences. I literally hung it corner to corner, edge to edge --- so that it covered the entire wall. I think it'd be so cool if someone came up with some way that you could submit artwork to be turned into wallpaper. My kids "wall of art" inspires me to want to do something like that!
     
  17. Ms.Jasztal

    Ms.Jasztal Maven

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    Jun 27, 2007

    I made mine, mostly- my rules, Give Me Five, Morning Work Expectations, Lining Up Procedures, and road signs to go with my theme. The ABC line was purchased at a teacher store.

    FREE STUFF:
    I got free environmental posters through our county's water management district website (SWFTMD) and environmental center through our school district.

    Brochures are also free- always- and you can cut out photos from them to make social studies-related materials.

    Strangely, my classroom kind of has the same color scheme as my website...
     
  18. I want to TEACH

    I want to TEACH Companion

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    Jun 28, 2007

    Classroomdirect.com has a lot of inexpensive materials/decor & shipping is free if you order $49+ & you get a free gift [it is very nice].Also, the Mailbox magazine comes with a free poster in every issue & it has some of the best classroom ideas out there.
     
  19. paperheart

    paperheart Groupie

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    Buy a pack of chart paper, decent markers (the thick crayola are perfect), some colored pencils and copy the posters you see in teacher magazines or make up your own. Laminate and wa la!! It gives a nice consistency a pp also mentioned.

    Government websites offer free posters (anti-drug, suicide prevention etc.)

    Google "free posters for teachers" or even "free stuff for teachers" and you are bound to get some.

    I take a piece of clothesline and attach it either flat again one wall or from wall to wall. I make a long border--one word per piece of paper--with "It is going to be a fantastic year!" It is eye-catching and kind of fills up the space.

    calendar pictures (my walgreens has a bunch of 2007 calendars for 50 cents right now)

    rip pictures out of magazines (science magazines, national geographic, skateboarding, sports...)

    old paintings and stuff at yardsales

    school work from first day of school (i.e. have them decorarate something with their name on it)

    movie posters

    Also don't forget other non-poster items: fake or real plants, stuffed animals, book covers (open them up and display them on the tops of shelves), DIY products for decorating kids rooms, mobiles, photos of your life outside of school, college brochures and other college material (never too early)

    good luck!!
     
  20. ancientcivteach

    ancientcivteach Habitué

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    Jun 28, 2007

    Fabulous!

    I'm very excited about this! I have a whole collection of historical coloring books - how cool to enlarge an important picture and let that be the "mural" for what we are currently studying!!

    www.doverpublications.com They have all kinds of history, science, and literature coloring books - sorry math folks ;)
     
  21. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    I echo an above post- the teaching tolerance posters are great.
     
  22. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Jun 28, 2007

    And some come with CDs. I love them.
     
  23. MrsPatten

    MrsPatten Comrade

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    Jun 28, 2007

    Also ask your principal (or secretary if you too nervous) if he/she has any funds available to you. Our previous principal (gonna miss him) gave all new teachers $100 to spend to "jump start" their classroom.

    It's okay to ask about this. How will he/she know you need anything if you don't let them know?
     
  24. Tbelle1035

    Tbelle1035 Cohort

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    MrsPatten, your post reminded me about something I had forgotten. Our PTO group always gifts new teachers with $100 for that same purpose. It's a nice gesture, one that other PTO groups might want to initiate.
     
  25. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    I have got to stop shopping. I've gone to Carson Dellosa and Frank Schaeffer and Scholastic - all to the outlet or clearance sections - and have spent a bunch of money. It is so much fun getting the stuff in. There are some remarkable buys out there. Cheaper than e-bay.
     

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