Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Creating a Second Grade Environment

2nd Grade Environment

I came into my classroom a week before school started. I had taught younger ages in the past and for the first time was asked to do Reggio Inspired environment in a second grade classroom. There  is not very many primary classrooms that have this philosophy.  I had to make critical decisions about what I wanted my environment to look like. I had to decide what centers was important in this age range, how I teach, and how children learn and move in the environment.

 I first look at power sources for my lighting and technology. These are the things in your environment that can not be changed. My room is full of straight lines and rectangles. I wanted to soften the environment. I took out all the desk and found round tables. This allows the room to open up and have movement in the room . I put my computers facing each other in the back with a shelf in front of them. I created symmetry with the shelves facing each other. The back shelf has my math manipulative and the front shelf has language and literacy elements. Along the right wall is my science and block center.

Along the left wall is my library, cubbies, and teacher area. In the back is my atelier (art center). My entry way has items for the parents and communication between home and school. I have several lighting sources in my room. The chandeliers are made out of old umbrellas. The umbrellas have been a great draw to my classroom. People come in and try to guess what they are made with. I took 2 old umbrellas that would not close (make sure the out appendages are not broken they will not hold lights). I spray painted them white. I took  icicle lights and draped them around and secured with white bread ties. They are hung with fishing line and hooks that fit into the grid of the ceiling tile. White extension cords run across the ceiling and down the wall to an outlet. The top picture you can see my identity panels that cover up the cord running down the wall. The next challenge was to soften the room and make the room less geometrical. I hung two limbs at an angle over my desk and the block center. They are symmetrical  and draped with my colors(cream and sage green) from the limbs to detract from the two corners.I lined my bulletin and white boards with a sheets and old curtains. The back of my selves have burlap stapled on so that you cannot see the holes. I think plants are a crucial element to soften the room and bring natural color into the space.The color on your wall need to be neutral so that the children's work gets to be the focus point. I put two water fountains for sound and a scentsy for smell. When you enter the room it should be inviting and have a warmness about it. It should say you are welcome here and this is a wonderful place to learn.

1 comment:

  1. This is the most beautiful 2nd grade classroom I have ever seen! Well done. What a lot of hard work and investment.