Making your room more "home-y"?

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by Mrs. Q, Jul 14, 2011.

  1. Mrs. Q

    Mrs. Q Cohort

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    Jul 14, 2011

    I teach high school journalism -- I have a decent-sized room, but it's a computer lab. I have big, built-in wooden desks along two sides of my class room. The third side is the chalkboard and the fourth side is the door to my office and a storage room.

    Above the desks are wooden cabinets. I *love* the storage, but it makes it feel a little prison-like to me, lol. It's just not very inviting at all. There's no space for bulletin boards or any texture. I have posters but they're all very 1-dimensional.

    There's a big window to my office - I thought about putting up a tension rod and hanging a curtain? I would keep it open anytime students are in the room, but it might add some dimension.

    I wanted a big floor rug for the classroom, but haven't found one for cheap yet.

    Any other ideas?

    Here are pictures of the desk areas:
    http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f77/JLQuick30/IMG_0191.png
    http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f77/JLQuick30/IMG_0190.png
     
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  3. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Jul 14, 2011

    I have a lot of potted plants and an aquarium in my room. They've done a lot to make my room feel more comfortable and less institutiony. Do you think you could fit a few fun plants on your counter?
     
  4. passionateacher

    passionateacher Comrade

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    How about covering the cabinet doors with warm-colored wall paper or a home-y print? Clouds...or pictures of kids' faces from magazines?
     
  5. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Jul 14, 2011

    You can easily turn the cabinets into bulletin boards, that might give it a more home-y feeling. Also, maybe a few fake flowers on the computer stations.

    Could you use anything to cover the backs of the computer desks? Maybe hide those cables?
     
  6. Mrs. Q

    Mrs. Q Cohort

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    I did end up using the cabinet doors as a bulletin board this year --but I just taped the papers up. Maybe this year, I will cover some of the doors in fabric first.

    I like the ideas of flowers or plants, even if they are fake. Hmm...

    I would love to hide some of the computers, but I'm not sure what I would do with them?
     
  7. jillevelyn

    jillevelyn Rookie

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    Jul 15, 2011

    Pictures of Rooms with Plants?

    I am also going for a "home-y" feel to my high school classroom (9th English) this year. I would love to see pictures of high school classrooms with plants. I have searched the internet for some images, but so far no luck.

    (By the way, I am going with a black and white color scheme with yellow as an accent color.)

    Thanks!
     
  8. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    Jul 15, 2011

    Lime green fabric with interesting print tacked to the back of the tables for color.

    Get a couple rolls of cork board and hot glue it to the cabinet doors, and then cover it either the same fabric or a plain lime green. I wouldn't bother with the wavy border. That would make it look too elementary. (No offense to any upper level that use it. I'm just not picturing it for this room.)
    Add a large plant on the floor and one or two to the counters.

    OK. It doesn't have to be lime green. That's just my "go to" color with blue.
     
  9. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    Jul 15, 2011

    I'm thinking about getting some little palm trees for my classroom this year. However, I may go with artificial ones since I have a tendency to kill anything I try to grow! I think palm trees may make it feel more like Hollywood.

    Other than that, I put pictures of my family and things up around my classroom, and little odds and ends around.

    I don't worry too much about making it look like home. It's a classroom at a school. I'll post pictures when I get my room finished this year.
     
  10. Mrs. Q

    Mrs. Q Cohort

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    Jul 15, 2011

    My color scheme is actually black & white with red accents.

    The blue tables annoy me, lol -- I'm thinking about getting black contact paper and covering all the tables. Then maybe I could use red fabric in place of your ideas with lime green? Does anyone think that might work? lol
     
  11. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Jul 15, 2011

    I love homey, cozier classrooms too! How about getting a few little cheap furniture or accent pieces from a cheap furniture store like Ikea or even Target.

    Yes, I like plants & an aquarium too.
     
  12. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Jul 15, 2011

    I strive for my room to be cozy as well. I love when students tell me they enjoy the "feel" of my room...I think they can learn so much better when they're comfortable.

    As others have suggested, a few plants.

    A couple lamps might be nice as well for soft lighting.

    When I was an instructional assistant before graduating I had my own classroom and it also had a wall of cabinets. Great storage, but they were old and ugly. I was hesitant to cover them in fabric as I hadn't seen it done before but I was very happy with the results! It took a lot of work—taking out those screws that had been painted no telling how many times since the school was built decades ago equals sore hands and sweat! :)

    I think the curtain would also be nice.
     
  13. Reality Check

    Reality Check Habitué

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    Jul 15, 2011

    In a high school room?? :huh:
     
  14. The Fonz

    The Fonz Math teacher (for now...)

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    Jul 15, 2011

    i have mets & jets jerseys hanging on the wall, i made the bulliten boards mets colors, i brought my own bookshelfs into the classroom and filled them with all my math books, textbooks, and education books from college (so my classroom is kind of like my own mini office, during off hours)..
     
  15. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Reality, what is your point exactly? When you turn fourteen you're suddenly supposed to thrive in an often prison-like atmosphere?
     
  16. Mrs. Q

    Mrs. Q Cohort

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    Jul 15, 2011

    My thoughts exactly.

    And to the previous poster, I don't want my room to replace their home. I realize it's a classroom. But in my experience, kids learn in places where they feel relaxed and comfortable. Why not add a few decorations that might foster that feeling?
     
  17. Ms.Jasztal

    Ms.Jasztal Maven

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    Jul 16, 2011

    In fourth grade, I am trying to make my room as "home-y" as possible, and I think it is cool when older teachers adopt that philosophy as well. I would hang photographs on the walls from the yearbook staff, if possible, and try to include some kind of meeting area with a few couches and a coffee table. Plants compliment everything in the room, too. Try to add splashes of color here and there.

    Ha... as an adult, I cannot learn in a "prison-like" atmosphere. I think at any age, students should be comfortable.
     
  18. looneyteachr

    looneyteachr Companion

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    Jul 16, 2011

    walmart has 10x10 carpet for $20 - get floor lamps and a desk lamp in snazzy color in the back to college section of walmart or target - add plants

    in my regular classroom i got $2 bed pillows & put bright pillow cases on them and put in big colored laundry basket - kids cud use them to sit up close to smartboard or if we watched video

    when u go cool assignments stretch a colored laundry rope across the ceiling and clothespin the assignments onto the rope
     
  19. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    My colors aren't blue and lime green. I have black, white, and red.

    Not sure if the black contact will work or if the kids will pick at it. I think I'd try it, though.

    Some of my high school rooms were very cozy and comfortable. My son had an English class that was amazing. The teacher had lamps and fake oriental rugs on the floor. The kids worked at old wooden tables and desks scattered everywhere. There were also some chairs and sofas. Plants. Wooden bookshelves. It looked like an old English manor room or a library at Oxford. She was certainly a different type of teacher, and he enjoyed the class as much as his not-interested- in- education body could tolerate.
     
  20. misterdee

    misterdee Rookie

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    Jul 17, 2011

    I buy records at yard sales and thrift stores. Many of the old album covers are great conversation pieces for students and a hit with parents at conference time.
     
  21. Special-t

    Special-t Enthusiast

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    Jul 17, 2011

    I'm going to get a desk lamp this year. It will make my workspace more homey and it will give me a choice other than the automatic lights that turn off if I sit at my desk for 10 minutes without moving around the room. So annoying! We have a wall of big windows with a really nice view - so that creates some nice atmosphere.
     
  22. Good Doobie

    Good Doobie Rookie

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    I probably am not the best to ask about this.
    I've been teaching so long that my home looks more like my science class room. My home has become one big experiment. In my home we have all kinds of things that I experiment with: water pipes and hoses, a garden, skateboards, electrical wires, fans, magnets, computers, fire places, heaters, an air-conditioner a dog and my wife and kids. Occasionally students will bring things to class to give me more ideas for my home.
     
  23. Mrs. Q

    Mrs. Q Cohort

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    Jul 17, 2011

    Thank you guys for all the wonderful ideas!! I'm making a list from everything that's been posted and I'm going to see what I can make work with the budget I'm wanting to maintain. I'll have to post pictures when it's all finished! :)
     

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