Elementary Classroom Tour : Organization and Design Ideas to Promote Student Independence

We are heading into the fourth week of school and I finally had a moment to write my classroom reveal post for this year. If you read my reveal post from last year, you will recognize most of what you are about to see.

Last year, I switched schools and put a bundle of time into decorating and had a precious class that cared for everything so carefully, which saved me a ton of time this August. That meant I was able to focus all my classroom decor brain power on details, making my room feel even more like home. Without further ado, here is a peek inside my second grade classroom.

Core Inspiration Wide Angle Second Grade Classroom View


This is my go-to storage spot for anything related to our current units of study. I also have bins that store examples of projects for each month. I am not a fan of file cabinets (I only have one for my student portfolios) so I use little drawers and magazine files that force me to stay organized and rid my life of excess paper. All of this is kept behind closed doors to reduce clutter and excess visual noise for my students.

Core Inspiration teacher resource cabinet with daily lesson materials, weekly copies, storage for centers, and monthly storage.


Each drawer on the upper shelf contains items I want to keep handy for current units of study or lessons for next week. This eliminates piles and clutter around the room. When I am lesson planning each week, quickly check my drawers and am reminded of the resources I wanted to use for the coming week.

The lower drawers contain anything that needs to be graded, filed or copied. I love the “Grade” drawer because it minimizes paper clutter and keeps my mind clear throughout the day. As soon as the drawer gets full, I sit down and grade. The stack of papers never becomes an unmanageable mountain because the drawer is fairly small.

Here’s a closer look at my monthly project bins found on the top shelf.

Core Inspiration monthly projects samples can be stored in Sterilite hanging file folder bins.

These customizable drawer labels are available in my Teacher’s Pay Teacher’s store. Simply print your labels, attach to a 12×12 sheet of scrapbook paper, trim down to size, and tape to the inside of the drawer front.

Sterilite 3-Drawer Organizers are perfect for classroom organization.

These round labels found on my daily copy bins are also included in the same Classroom Organization Labeling Kit.

Core Inspiration weekly copy bins in classroom.


This is a new feature in my classroom and takes the place of the teacher desk I had in the corner last year (that desk lasted all of two weeks). To create this station, I set three pieces of Ikea furniture in the corner. One white Kallax Shelf and two Trofast Frames with green storage boxes (this version is slightly darker green).

My amazingly handy brother designed a surface to cover the gaps that resulted from the corner arrangement and added backing to the Kallax Shelf so our math supplies wouldn’t fall behind the shelf.  This is where we store our math binders and various manipulatives for word work and math.

Core Inspiration math and word work station for center and game storage.

If you are interested in downloading the daily place value activities my students complete each morning in their math binder, click here.

Core Inspiration number of the day binder storage.

These clear photo storage boxes from The Container Store are perfect for creating place value block kits that your students can easily keep organized. Our math tower has any supplies students may need to build models for our Word Problem Solving Task Cards or play our Math In Motion Hands-On Math Games.

Core Inspiration math manipulative storage.

Our word work tower stores all our supplies for Wacky Word Work practice completed during Daily Five.


Core Inspiration mini lesson zone. Copernicus bamboo teaching easel, ikea shelf turned bench and lesson white board.

Our mini lesson zone is a bit cozier this year thanks to my amazing mom who sewed a cushion for our white Kallax Shelf (turned into a bench). I highly recommend using outdoor pillows in the classroom because they are far more durable and easier to clean. My students now call the bench our couch! I am also thrilled to have a full-functioning easel for the first time ever in my teaching career. I keep our anchor charts for reading and Daily Five on the easel and now host our math lessons on the large white board.

Here’s a closer look at our gorgeous bench. Thanks Mom!

Core Inspiration mini lesson bench. A comfortable place for teachers to sit while teaching a mini lesson.

Our Container Store storage cubbies for our Math In Motion Hands-On Math Game Cards.

Our Daily Five I Charts (click here to download). I cover these with oversized post its on the first day of school and reveal each of the expectations as they are introduced during the first weeks of Daily 5.

Core Inspiration Daily 5 I Charts

Our Copernicus Bamboo Teaching Easel (great quality) includes these handy storage bins to keep Responsive Classroom and Daily Five supplies close at hand.

Core Inspiration storage bins in Copernicus Bamboo teaching easel.


Core Inspiration small group instruction table.
Core Inspiration small group instruction table.
Core Inspiration supplies area.

My small group area is pretty much the same as last year with a few minor tweaks. When I took this photo I thought the balance ball was going to be the best idea ever for my teacher chair. Now, it’s at my house because I realized you can’t sit on a balance ball while wearing a dress. Live and learn.

To the right of our small group table is my guided reading tower from The Container Store. I added this through the middle of last year. It is the perfect size, made of super durable metal, and has five compartments – one for each day of the week. The only thing I have left to add are these teal dry erase Wall Pops to help students with personal space. Added bonus: they won’t have to bring their whiteboards to the back table during math…time saver!

This guided reading tower is also a perfect little spot to store any reading tools we are currently using and a mini timer so my reading aide can keep track of time during each round of Daily Five. These stools from Ikea are the perfect size because they tuck under the table and out of the way when we need more floor space.


Core Inspiration classroom sink area.

Nothing much to say here…this is our sink. I added a mirror this year because kids were constantly asking to use mine to check if something was in their teeth or monitor the progress of the countless facial injuries the seem to incur. The R.E.S.P.E.C.T. poster can be found in my store as part of my classroom management system.


Core Inspiration classroom library.

Still my absolute favorite corner of the classroom. Our ever-growing library is stocked to the brim this year thanks to the generous Scholastic Reading Club points system. All of our books are labeled with full-color sticker labels that perfectly match the image on each book bin (for picture books) or shelf (for chapter books).

All of my bins are from Really Good Stuff labeled with my Classroom Library Labeling Kit (also available in white). I took several other photos of my library so you can get a closer look but this is a crazy long blog post, so I will blog about the library in more detail later this week.


Core Inspiration front of the classroom dream big white marquee block lettering.

At the front of the room are our quiet chimes, our inspiring Dream Big letters and the daily schedule. I like to keep things clean and simple so my “teacher desk” doubles as our projector station. My fingers are crossed that this is the year my school installs ceiling-mounted projectors so I can move our doc cam to the corner and this table can be eliminated.

In the meantime, the laminated green paper helps me position documents in the right spot so I don’t constantly have to look behind me to double-check that my students are seeing what I want them to.

Core Inspiration document camera set up.


For the fifth year in a row, these sturdy white Kallax Shelves are working perfectly for storage of book bins, group supplies, tidy up tools, and work in progress folders. These stations minimize desk clutter like a boss and help students stay super organized.

Core Inspiration group supply stations.

This year, I added duct tape to our book boxes (Ikea Flyt Magazine Files) to increase durability. I also added a personal touch to each with my customizable Book Bin Labeling Kit. Second graders are really hard on these compared to third graders.

Core Inspiration FLYT book bins with duct tape and personalized labels increase durability.

Here’s a peek inside our group supply bins. I load them up with as many color options as possible to support focus on creating quality products with quality supplies. Our tidy up tool is a super fun fuzzy duster. The kids are obsessed with cleaning when you give them a bright green fuzzy puff.

Core Inspiration uses Sterilite mini drawers for organizing group supplies in the classroom.

Can’t wait to post updates throughout the school year so you can see how amazing our room looks now that the kids have added their beautiful artwork and writing to our walls. For frequent updates, be sure to follow me on Instagram.


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152 Responses

  1. Laura, I've so enjoyed this post – so inspiring. What an engaging place you've created to optimize your kids' learning and your own teaching. If I were a parent bringing my child to your room, I'd know they'd be WELL looked after. MargD

  2. Your tip about laminating a sheet of paper to use with your document camera is literally GENIUS!!! Why didn't I ever think of this!?!? I spend so much time positing papers, and this will totally save that headache. Thanks for the best tip ever!! 🙂


  3. Hi there,
    I think the consensus is that your room is GORGEOUS! I can't get enough of it! I'm looking to upgrade a lot of my classroom furniture (hooray!) and I love the white you have used, but I have to ask, does it honestly get dirty really fast with all the lovely kiddies handling it?

    I'm torn between a love of the white, and having to clean all the surfaces areas and drawers at least once a week which makes me wonder if dark furniture is more user friendly.
    Thanks for getting back to me and putting out this truly inspiring post!

    1. Thank you Rees! How exciting that you get a furniture upgrade!

      I prefer the white because you can see if a surface is dirty (I like to see exactly where dirt is so I can eliminate it ASAP).

      The kids keep it clean daily during our tidy up time. We have jobs including that include the responsibility of dusting and wiping down the furniture and surfaces in our classroom.

      I highly recommend white because it brightens the room and makes the environment feel open and relaxing.

  4. Wow. I teach in a rural area where poverty abounds. Our computers have monitors from the 90's. Seriously! Where is the equity in education? Your room is beautiful but I could never afford it.

  5. I love your room! Looks great! Gives me so many ideas for next year! One quick question: what kind of document camera do you have? Do you like it? I had one that disappeared while I was out on maternity leave and I’d love to get another one. Thanks!

    1. Hi Lori, I’m glad you were able to gather a few new ideas. I have a Lumen DC192 Ladibug Doc Camera and I really like it. How crazy that your’s went missing while you were out…that very disappointing. Here’s a link if you want to take a closer look at mine: https://amzn.to/1Ydq5dt

  6. HI! I love your organization! Your room is beautiful! I was wondering where you found your long shelving unit for your book bins.

  7. Your room is beautiful. Can you tell me where you got the library pockets that you used for jobs? Thanks so much.

    1. My shaggy teal rug is from Pier One. They don’t have that exact rug at the moment (it was called a peacock blue rug), but they have something similar here. The rug with the white designs in it is from Walmart.

  8. I have absolutely fallen in love with your classroom and am so inspired as I venture into my first year of teaching! I was wondering where you found the blue and green leaves that you have on your bulletin board behind your small group instruction table?

  9. Hi Laura! Your room is amazing in look and function! I have just learned we are not able to affix anything to the walls in our new school this year. I teach kindergarten and was hoping to pull off a fun jungle theme, but now I’m not sure how to do that. I thought you may have a suggestion? Any are welcome!!! Thanks!

    1. Hi Shannon,
      Thank you so much for taking the time to comment. What a bummer to hear you can’t affix anything to the walls. Does this mean you don’t have bulletin boards in the room where you can hang things?
      If so, I would focus on creating your jungle vibe with color coordinating bins from (Really Good Stuff or Dollar Tree both have several color options) Possibly spray paint any furniture you can and add cute leaf cut outs around the room (border on the whiteboard, leaf/jungle themed name tags and labels. A green rug (Ikea has great rug prices), or the leaf-shaped Sit Spots.
      If you do have bulletin boards, I would cover them in various shades green paper and border those with some leafy/jungle borders. Would love to hear more detail about the specifics of this regulation but I hope this helps get you started. 🙂

  10. This room is gorgeous and in my favorite colors! I am an aspiring educator and finishing up my program. I was wondering how you were able to afford all of this. I would LOVE to have my room this clean, organized, and beautiful but the task and cost is a little daunting.

    1. Hi Katrina,
      Thank you so much for messaging me. 🙂 Congrats on finishing up your credential…that is a huge accomplishment and one of the most exciting and nerve-wracking times in your teaching career.
      It has taken all seven years of my teaching career to gather the furniture and organizational tools I use in my classroom. At the beginning of my career, I purchased most of it myself (because I needed to spend my limited school budget on other classroom materials). I would buy a couple items each year. Last year and the year prior were the first two years I used school money to buy a furniture for my classroom (the file cabinet in 2015 and the the easel in 2016). One of my main motivators for selling on TPT was so that I could buy things for my classroom. 🙂
      Since a lot was bought with money out of my own pocket, I spend time at the beginning of the year teaching students how to truly care for and clean the classroom so that our furniture and supplies last. It is amazing what kids can do and how careful they can be when they are shown how. I am always so grateful for the help they provide in making our classroom a beautiful home away from home. All of my IKEA shelves have lasted five years as a result…and they are just now starting to show wear.
      It certainly took time and patience to get my room to look like the vision I had from day 1 in the classroom, but it is well worth the slow investment. I hope this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions. Enjoy your first year of teaching!

  11. Your classroom is beyond beautiful!! I was wondering where you purchased the green leaves that stand out of the corner of your classroom library. Are those from IKEA?

      1. Hi! I love your room. I have the leaf canopy but I have not been able to hang it easily because we aren’t allowed to nail holes in the wall. Did you drill it into the wall? Any other idea as to how I can hang mine? Thank you!

        1. Hi Veronica,
          I drilled them into my bulletin board. The design of the leaves gives you the ability to screw them into the wall at the base of the stem but they drooped down really low when I had them set up that way. Therefore, I added extra screws through the brighter green part of the leaf directly into the bulletin board. Thumb tacks probably would have done the job too if you pinned several of them right through the bright green leaf along the edge. Another thought is to poke a hole through the leaf canopy, string fishing line through the tiny hole in the canopy and tie it to a washer (you could even paint it green if you wanted it to blend in more), then tie the other other end of the fishing line to a push pin and pinning it to the wall to hold the leaves up. Let me know if any of those ideas work.
          Good luck! 🙂

  12. Everything about your classroom is absolutely beautiful! I love the color theme. I was wondering what borders you used on your bulletin boards in your classroom library? I can see the green chevron. Is the scalloped border layered with it just a plain green or is there a design on it as well? I’m obsessed with the way you layered the borders- thank you for the inspiration! 🙂

  13. I love love love your classroom!! I was wondering where you got the numbers that are on the our jobs library pockets and your welcome and schedule signs. I looked in your TPT store, but couldn’t find them. Thanks!

  14. I have been looking at your blog and instagram for the last two days and love everything in your room. I have a lot of same ikea furniture in my classroom, but always looking for better ways to organize and arrange my room. I too love your numbers that are on the jobs library pockets and your welcome and schedule signs. Will you be posting them to your TPT sight? Thank you!

    1. Hi Michelle,
      Thank you for taking the time to read the blog. 🙂 The welcome and schedule sign are made with cut out letters I purchased from a teacher supply store glued to card stock. I will be posting the job pocket number on TPT this school year.

  15. I LOVE your classroom!! I am implementing the Daily 5 this year in 2nd grade and would love to purchase your Daily 5 I charts. Are you going to make them available on TPT? And, THANK YOU for sharing so much about your classroom!!

    1. Hi Kristin,
      Thank you for reaching out. Great to hear you find the blog helpful. 🙂 I do not have my I Charts on TPT yet…it is on my project list. You can email me directly at [email protected] and we can figure out a way to get you set up for this year. 🙂

  16. Hi Laura, I love the colors and organization of your classroom. I was wondering where you purchased the teal and green magazine bins you used as your copy bins.

  17. I’m sorry if you have this somewhere and I missed it….where did you purchase the clock pictured that shows in red how much time remains?…

  18. Hey Laura!
    I just found your blog and love it! I am getting ready to start my first year teaching in August. The idea of setting up a classroom for the first time is extremely exciting but also hard to know where to start! I love that your classroom has two main color themes, real and green. I wouldn’t have thought to do that but I like the way it seems very visually organized. I don’t always have the best eye for colors, and was wondering if you have seen or tried any other 2 color combinations? Or if you have any tips on not swamping the room with real and blue but making sure to keep the theme going.
    Thanks so much for all you have posted!

    1. Hi Emily,
      Thank you for reaching out. Your comment is so kind. Congratulations on jumping into teaching. It sounds like you already have the level of thoughtfulness and attention to detail required for this profession. 🙂
      The only color combination I have ever had in my classroom is blues, greens, and teals. I went into designing my first classroom with these colors in mind so I could invest in high quality furniture and organization/storage tools over the years.
      My tips are:
      1. Settle into your space a bit before jumping in full force with decorating. It’s okay not to have everything organized and decorated exactly how you want it on the first day of school. Work a few weeks in your first classroom and take notes on your needs as they arise. Hold off on buying higher priced items until you know you really need them.
      2. Decide on a color combination you like and you know you will like for years to come. Switching colors every year or every couple years is a total waste of resources and leads to a classroom that looks cluttered and hectic. When you have your colors selected, they will stand out to you everywhere you go – it makes shopping for your classroom much easier.
      3. Use your colors as accents, not as the focus. When you start painting the furniture in your theme colors – you may have gone too far. The larger walls and furniture pieces in your room should be neutral in color. Your theme colors should be reserved for bulletin boards and and decorative accents or bins.
      4. When papering your walls, stick with two colors. You don’t need every shade of blue in a blue themed classroom. Many teachers make the mistake of papering each wall in a different color or a different shade, which causes visual noise.
      I hope these tips help you out. I would love to see how your classroom comes together! Send me a picture when you’ve got it set up. 🙂

    2. Emily,
      Laura’s advice is spot on. I have only two colors on my walls: yellow and turquoise. They look great together and the yellow brightens up the room because it emulates natural sunlight. Once you’ve decided on your wall colors, I recommend investing in fabric. It lasts for years, never wrinkles or fades, and looks fabulous. Some teachers enjoy patterned fabric, but I recommend solid colors so that student work stands out, not the pattern. It’s also easier on the eyes for people who can become visually overstimulated. Play around with colors using butcher paper initially, though, until you find what combination comforts you. After all, you have to live with those colors for years to come.
      Good luck!

  19. Hi… I am so excited because my classroom is getting painted this summer. My custodian said that I can pick any color I want. I was wondering if you know what color blue you have on your walk I absolutely love it !
    Thank you.

    1. Hi Kim, you are so lucky…what a cool opportunity to pick you paint color! The color I have in my classroom is Benjamin Moore #2057-40 Ash Blue. 🙂

  20. Your room is so amazing! I love all of your organization systems! I am curious about where your students store their work? Do they have journals, writing folders, spelling folders…? I am transitioning to grade 2 (from K) next year and am trying to figure out how to best organize all of my students’ work.
    Also, I am so inspired by your rubric drawers – very cool idea! I think I will give that one a try next year 🙂
    Thank you!

    1. Thank you Sarah! My students have:
      Writing journals – used for rough drafts and journaling
      Reading journals – used for daily reading goals – aligned to Lucy Caulkin’s reading units of study
      Word work journals – used for the daily word work routines
      Math binders – used for number of the day and storing any in-progress task cards
      Work In Progress folders – used to store any ongoing projects that don’t fit into the categories above

      1. Thank you for your reply! Where are their journals stored? Does each table group have its own storage area for these?
        Thanks again!

  21. Hi Laura!
    I absolutely love the idea of the Kallax shelving for your groups. I will be a first year teacher for 4th grade next year and would love to implement it. My only worry is not having enough room for them. Do you find that they take up a lot of space in your classroom? And how does grouping your students into only three larger groups work? I would love to have 4-5 groups ideally, but I know 4-5 Kallax shelving might be a little much. Im obsessed with organization, and feel like it would make my first year a little less stressful!

    1. Hi Mikeaela, congrats on getting prepped for your first year. Planning your room for the first time is so exciting! I do not find that the shelves take up too much space, but I also try to minimize additional furniture around the edge of the room as much as possible to help with that. I think four or five groups is totally reasonable. I actually used to have five groups with the Kallax shelves at each group in my first classroom. Then I reduced to four groups when I moved into my current room, and this year I reduced to three much larger groups. Totally flexible, and all three setups were great! I hope this is helpful as you make your decisions. 🙂

  22. Have you had any trouble with the Kallax shelves falling over? I was going to pick some up for my classroom library. Then, the description said they must be anchored to the wall. That made me a little hesitant. What do you think??

    1. Almost all IKEA furniture comes with wall anchors for safety reasons. I don’t have mine anchored and they have never fallen over. We do talk as a class about proper etiquette when it comes to getting a book that is out of reach and the dangers of misusing furniture at the beginning of each year.

  23. I am looking for your Daily 5 charts. I have looked in your store but I can’t seem to locate them. Could you please help me?
    Thank you!

  24. Hello!
    I’m pretty much stalking your room. It is my dream room and over the last couple of years I have slowly developed into this. I was looking around for the turquoise bulletin paper you have behind your small group desk. With the letters that say “why fit in when you were born to stand out?” Would you happen to remember where you got the paper and letters from? I’ve been using lime green and I’m ready to switch to a more subtle color.
    Thanks again!
    – Meghan

  25. Hi,
    I tried looking for your Daily 5 poster on your TpT but cannot find it. Could you please post the link?
    Thanks! It looks so helpful for students that I just gotta’ have it 🙂

      1. This explains why I couldn’t find them on TPT! Can I bug you for a copy too!
        Your classroom is beautiful 🙂 I’m heading to IKEA next week and I’m looking forward to purchase another Kallax to use as a bench/storage! Great idea!
        So excited to use the classroom economy this year too!

  26. Hi! Is there any way I could get the Daily 5 I-Charts that you have made? I love how clean and simple they look!!! Thank you!

  27. Can you possibly send me the daily 5 posters or tell me where I can find them? I would like to use in my third grade classroom this year.

  28. Hello Laura! I’m absolutely in love with your room and I’m using it as inspiration while I’m preparing for my first classroom in August! I found the Kallax shelf from IKEA but I’m curious as to what you used to cover the ends/fill the holes of the shelves. Thanks so much in advance! 🙂

    1. Hi Kristin, thank you. 🙂 I did not use anything to cover the holes, I just tipped each shelf on its side so the surfaces without holes are on top and bottom.

  29. Laurie I love your classroom. I’m going to use a lot of your ideas this year for getting organized, especially the library. Have the containers you use for the books held up well for your classroom? And Can you tell where you got the different flowers that you have on the bulletin board behind your two big leaves. That looks so pretty. One more thing, can you send me a copy of your daily 5. Thank you so much!

    1. Hello Mari. Thank you! The book containers are like new after three years of use. The two large leaves are from IKEA and the various flowers are from Michael’s craft store. I just emailed you the Daily 5 posters. 🙂

  30. Hello,
    I love your beautiful classroom! I want to know if you have the daily 5 anchor charts available for purchase?

  31. Wow! You’re classroom is amazing! It has inspired me to do so much to mine! I can’t wait to utilize some of your ideas! Thank you for sharing! Where can I find the Daily 5 Posters?

    1. Your classroom is outstanding! After being a Title I reading teacher and co-teaching in a shared classroom for the last 8 years I’ve decided to go back into the general education classroom. I’m nervous but super-excited! I love your ideas. Would you please send me your daily 5? I can’t wait to see your updates!

      1. Hi
        I love, love, love your classroom. This will be my first time teaching departmentalized reading. I taught 1st grade for the last two years. I want to make reading a really “big” deal in my class. Can I get your daily 5 poster as well? I got rid of my desk and function from my guided reading table. I want to make reading centers more inviting, so I’m donating my bench from home to my classroom. I see you have a comfy chair in your library, I think I will put my rocking chair over there. I need ideas of how to stay organized with teaching 2 groups of students. Keeping up with their Guided reading and regular core materials. I love the fact that there is no clutter in your classroom. Please help if you have any ideas. 😉

        1. Hi Sandra,
          How exciting that you get to teach departmentalized reading! 🙂 Will you be teaching both groups yourself, or will you have an aide in the room with you? You can find the Daily 5 posters here.

  32. Where did you get your big blue rugs? They are so pretty! I can never find ones I like that are the size I want without spending a small fortune!

    1. Hi Abigail, one rug is from Walmart (super affordable, but had to be replaced after two years) and the other is from Pier One (major splurge, but still looks as good as new).

  33. Hi Laura,
    I’ve been trying to find the turquoise bulletin paper you have behind your small group desk. With the letters that say “why fit in when you were born to stand out?” Would you happen to remember where you got the paper and letters from? Also where did you purchase all your green plastic woven baskets from?Thanks!

    1. Hi Rachel,
      The letters are Creative Teaching Press, you can find them here (affiliate link). The paper is by Fadeless and the color is teal… you can find it here (affiliate link). The bins are from Target. They are part of the Y-Weave Bin Collection they sell, but they change the colors every season and don’t seem to have the bright green currently.
      I hope you enjoy setting up your room this year. 🙂

  34. Hi there! Your room is amazing! I have been scouring the internet trying to find the magazine holders you used in those colors. Where did you get them?

  35. I love the theme to your classroom. I’ve use it before and plan to do it again this year. Did you know that there is a song call “Dream Big” by Ryan Shupe & the RubberBand. It makes for a great theme song!

  36. Hi! I LOVE your classroom! I have a room that has a TON of open wall space and lots of slate boards that I’d like to hang things on, but my stuff always falls down part way through the year. I can’t staple (cinder block walls), and tape and command strips just aren’t doing the trick. Do you have any tips or posts about how you hang your paper/decorate your walls to look so immaculate? Thanks for sharing all your wonderful ideas!

    1. Hi Jennifer, thank you for reaching out. 🙂 I do not currently have a post about wall decorating, but it sounds like a wonderful idea and I will certainly add it to my planning doc. When I read the description of your space, it reminds me of the classroom that Kristen from Ladybug’s Teacher Files teaches in. She just did an Instagram story about covering her slate boards to make them into bulletin boards. I would recommend following her on Instagram, and then messaging her with this question. Her classroom is simply gorgeous! I hope this lead is helpful.
      Laura Santos

  37. I changed grade levels and classrooms this year after 13 years in third grade and 9 years in the same room! Your class gave me a good reason to change EVERYTHING and I’m loving it so far! Thanks for the inspiration! I do have a question – are your Daily 5 posters available in your TpT store? My district adopted a new reading curriculum this year and the posters would be perfect!
    Thanks in advance and I hope you have a wonderful school year!

      1. I love how responsive you are! love love your classroom! Do you use anchor charts in the classrooms? How do you organize bulletin board walls of instructional material without it looking so cluttered? I struggle with maintaining a cohesive look in my classroom once anchor chart and student work gets posted. Thanks in advance!

        1. Hi Jesscia, I do use anchor charts, but don’t display them all over the room – I have designated spots for them where students know they can flip back to reference older charts. Do you follow me on Instagram? I feel like it would be most helpful to do an Instagram story to show you. 🙂

          1. Of course I follow you on IG! How could I not?! You’re class is amazing! Do you post anything for kids to reference back to or is all on anchor charts they flip through? I like having it placed so students flip through instead of it being hung on the wall but I feel like it would help them when they see it. What are your thoughts?

  38. Your classroom is so beautiful! Thanks for the inspiration 🙂 I was wondering if you have your daily 5 charts somewhere for purchase?

  39. I love your room! I am thinking of using tables instead of desks for storage, but I am trying not to spend too much money. Where do your students keep their notebooks and folders?

    1. Hi Morgan, my students keep those supplies inside their desks. They also have a book bin where they keep all the book they are reading and their reading notebook.

  40. I love your idea for the storage of place value blocks. Are the Iris Photo boxes you used for your place value block storage are the 4″x6″ or the 5″x7″ containers?

  41. Thank you so much for your wonderful ideas! You have so many great organization methods. I am using several of your class arrangements, with a few adjustments for my younger students, in my first-grade classroom this year. Thank you again!

  42. I would ???? to have a copy of your Daily 5 posters. I can’t seem to use the links above to get them. Any suggestions?

  43. My only concern is running out of space for them. Do they seem to occupy a lot of room in your classroom? How well would it work to divide your pupils into only three bigger groups? Idealistically, I would like to have 4-5 groups, however, I am aware that 4-5 Kallax shelves may be a bit much. I’m totally organized, and I think it would help me have a less stressful first year.

    1. Three groups worked great in my space and I really preferred it to times when I had 4-5 smaller groups. I have also used the shelves with five groups in a small portable and it worked great.

  44. Your elementary classroom is a haven of creativity and organization! The attention to detail and thoughtful design truly promote a wonderful learning environment. Wishing you and your students a fantastic school year filled with inspiration and growth!

I’m Laura Santos

I’ve been an elementary teacher for ten years, and love sharing tips and resources that make differentiated learning more manageable for you. Thank you for visiting.

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