In my classroom, my bulletin boards are a point of pride for me. I like clean cut, nicely put together boards with some color and some student involvement. I am all about the color, which is why most of my bulletin boards have multiple colors on them. I also am a fan of changing my bulletin boards every couple months.
My classroom has three bulletin boards, one that is spanning across the entire back wall of my classroom. I usually start the year with my back bulletin board split into sections. Last year it was three, this year it was two. The first section of the big board was my Grammar Corner. In the Grammar Corner I have posters with different tricks or tips for our grammar units that we complete in the first few weeks of school. The other half was a “Get to Know Ms. D” section. It had pictures with captions for the students to dip a little deeper into my life. I usually have pictures of my friends, family, fiance, pups, etc. It gives the students an extra way to get to know me as a new teacher. I also have returning students that come in to check out what’s new on my board.
My other two bulletin boards are reflective of student work. Probably my favorite board that I do repeatedly is the Taco board. During the first week of school we talk about goals that the students have for the year. They take the goals that they are setting and they write them on printed out pictures of tacos. The students color in the tacos and then we staple them up onto the board. The board has fun green letters that spell out “Let’s TACO bout goals” surrounded by the student tacos with their goals. I keep this up until after winter break as a reminder to the students of what their goal was and to see how they are progressing with their goals.
The other bulletin board that I set up at the beginning of the year is my Data Wall. I teach 7th and 8th grade so I am continuously tracking two grades worth of data when it comes to class comprehension of topics. I make a chart (looks like a bar graph) for each grade that has each assessment the students take with the state standard that each assessment measures. Each time the students take a test or quiz on one of our grammar topics, I find the average score for the grade and we use stickers to fill in the average on the poster. This is a way for the students to see how they as a grade are scoring on assessments when it comes to the grammar standards that they will be tested on when it comes to state testing time. If the grade as a whole averages less than a 75%, I reteach the topic and the students are given a retest. This is also an easy way for me to keep track of where the students are in preparation for our state testing.
After we come back from winter break I usually change the taco board and the large board in the back of the room. The taco board becomes a New Year’s resolution board, as we are “Ringing in the New Year,” the students write their resolutions on bells that hang in my room until it starts to get nice outside. My back board turns into a life update for what is going on in my life. I have pictures of all the important people and things in my life for the students to look at. This also keeps me sane during the lull in the middle of the year when the kids are crazy and school becomes extra stressful as state testing approaches. The other half of my board is a motivational posting that is full of neon color. The words ‘Today is a good day to…” are beside a table of motivational endings to that phrase.
To end the year I change my “ringing in the new year” bulletin board to a spring and summer theme with popsicles. We take some time to color in pictures of popsicles that I print out and the students names go on them. I hang it on the board with letters that say “Anything is Popsicle with these cool kids.” I take a section of my big bulletin board to put up my countdown to summer. When we have 25 days left of school I put up letters that say “Summer is almost here… only — days left!” Each day I change the number of days left. The kids and I really look forward to it every year.
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