This summer I read The Wild Card (Hope and Wade King) and while it’s targeted towards the general classroom teacher, there were plenty of gems for us too. I’d knew I needed to deal with my therapy room this year. My teenaged son had come by at one point (probably for money) and commented on how dirty it was. Mortifying since he’s hardly a shining example of cleanliness and he was referring to the general dinginess rather than the clutter. I’d also had a mouse problem back in the spring which freaked me out to the point of knocking on my materials closet before I opened the door just to make sure I never actually saw one of the creatures (I never did, but I kept coming across…clues. Ew.)
The Kings talk about the importance of your room growing dynamically with you and your students and I realized that while my caseload has evolved, my room hadn’t.
I’d also caught that TED talk about joy and who couldn’t use more joy in their day? It inspired me to add more color and whimsy to my room.
I started with a fresh coat of paint (Sherwin Williams Alabaster because I needed to stick with a white neutral, but this one at least had some warmth to it) which made things 100% better right away. I bought some wall clings which I adore and a new rug that makes me smile every time I walk in. You can see I’m still waiting for the corners to relax!
I already had a bunch of animal boxes so I decided to go with an overall zoo/safari type theme. I added a few more animal bins too.
Michaels had a deal for me on a rolling cart which is a million times more practical than the little table I’d inherited with the room (and said good bye too—don’t be afraid to let go). Ikea had a bookcase that gave me LOADS more storage which I desperately needed.
I shifted the table around just to keep my students on their toes. I can’t wait to see what they think of the new place! I also have plans to have them add a few touches during the first couple of weeks.
I’m in a building separate from the school so I think my welcome mat will also provide a practical solution on bad weather days in addition to being inviting.
The changes have me excited to spend time there, something I wasn’t feeling a lot of at the end of last year.
And changes don’t need to cost a fortune. Right now you can find things of clearance, especially if you look in “dorm decor” stores/areas. Happy shopping!
Let me know if you even have a space to decorate. Did you do anything new to make you happier this year? (Subscribers, check the next newsletter. I’m sending you these “My sound is” coloring sheets. They’re a simple way to have your students help update your room!)