So on Pinterest and on here, I see all these cute ideas for making classrooms feel homey and just a nice environment to learn in. Last school year, I brought in some plants, some cool lamps, more bean bags for reading, and made a nice area for students to easily access supplies. This was for middle school--7th and 8th grade. Last year was my 6th year of teaching these grades, but it seemed like it was the first year where I noticed things were constantly being ruined. I noticed frequently that the plants were broken and garbage was thrown into the pots--some roots were pulled up. The supplies were just always broken...like someone purposely just broke them for the fun of it. The lamps...like lava lamps were shaken up and messed up. Books in my silent reading area would be ripped or written in. It just seemed like my groups last year just ruined things on purpose and pretty secretly too. It was a larger classroom, but I was able to see every area. I mostly had desk work and some workshop time each day, but it wasn't chaotic. Sometimes if I raised the issue in class, I think it added fuel to the fire and I'd find things to be worse. I am curious if this is normal for middle school OR was the group I had just pretty immature??? Am I going to find this with most middle schoolers? I don't think at my school 3 years ago I had this problem, but I didn't have many things that could be touched. I did have the rule to respect the environment, but maybe I need to explain it even more. I'm going to a new school this year for middle school still. I want to make my room nice and inviting, but wondering if they're going to purposely break and ruin things again. I guess I'll have to teach more about respecting the environment, and I'm not bringing in so much. I assumed that 7th grade knew what it meant. Does anyone else have this problem? Is this normal?