My Classroom

Here are the latest photos of my classroom!

There has been some backlash against "cute" classrooms via the blog world.   I always work very hard and very long on getting my classroom to look just so, and I am PROUD of it.  I say, if I have to spend most of my waking hours in a place, it is going to be a place that makes me happy to look at.  A happy teacher = happy students.   Guess what?  My students love the classroom, too.   I wouldn't describe my classroom as just "cute," I would describe it as visually appealing, print rich, and functional!  I have everything labeled.  I like to include a visual image along with the words, this helps my first graders who don't know how to read yet.   It all makes for a self-sufficient class of students.   There is a place for everything and the students know where to find it or where to put it!

How did I create this visually appealing, print rich, functional, environment?  I'll tell you how, three weeks of elbow grease,  hours on my computer, laminating sheets,  a fabulous laser printer, a fabulous paper cutter, hot glue, bulletin board paper, borders, and a lot of black paint!

Did you notice all the black in my classroom?  That was me painting everything!  I have a matching issue.  I like everything to match.   Those ugly gray shelves (an office closing purchase my dad procured for me) turned into a stunning black bookshelf oasis.

Here are photos of the finished book shelves: 

The bins are from Big Lots.  The labels are from this packet:

My mom helped me paint this old toy box.  It was actually mine from when I was a child.

Then she helped me paint these sink cabinet doors.  Those are her glasses in the photo.
The sink area after:

I painted the student mailboxes black last year, but they needed a little touch up.  I decided to hot glue some black and white polka dot ribbon on the edges, to jazz them up.  Here are the mailboxes after:
For the mailbox numbers, I printed the numbers included in my Ultimate Bright Polka Dot Decor packet at a reduced percentage.   I cut and laminated them and then hot glued them to the mailboxes. 

I also added a ribbon border to my book display.  I purchased the ribbon from Michaels. 

Our closet doors have white boards instead of bulletin boards.  So every year, I hot glue wrapping paper to it to create my bulletin boards.   I purchased the wrapping paper from Marshall's.  I got the idea to use wrapping paper from Melanie of School Girl Style!

 The hot glue comes off easily with a scraper.  You want a smooth surface to work with.

Then I go and use hot glue again!   I used double boarders for all of my bulletin boards this year.  Another decorating tip, I learned from Melanie at School Girl Style.  The tonal borders are by Frog Street Press and the black and white borders are from Michaels.  The black and white borders can also be found online at MPM school supplies (I have a link to the right of this post).

Here are the boards after:

The polka dot lanterns are from Amazon.

 The birthday board in this photo is from this packet:

The banners you see in my room are from this packet:

The "Nobody's Perfect" sign is from Hope King's Classroom Rules and Quotes packet. 
The color posters and calendar months are from my Ultimate Bright Polka Dot Decor Packet.  The actual calendar is from Michaels and I cut off the border so that it would fit.   I also felt a border on the calendar would look way too busy with my already busy board. 
The color posters are also available separately {here}.

I use the bins above my closets to store my monthly themed read alouds, craft samples, centers, and extra copies.
The lime green pom-poms and mini-daisy above are also from School Girl Style's shop. 

 Last summer, I painted my desk.  This year it just needed a little touch up on the top and it was good to go.  I added lime green desk accessories from Poppin.

 My plan book is on a cookbook stand that I spray painted green.

This is my listening center area.  The stools are from Target.

 For more info on my bathroom pass system, read this post.

 I LOVE my Classroom Friendly Pencil Sharpener!!  It matches my decor and it sharpens anything.
 I designate caddies for specific centers.   The tablecloth is from Amazon.   I went to a fabric store and had them cut clear plastic for me.  I placed that over the tablecloth to protect it from rips. 
As I told you before, I label everything!  Even the guinea pigs are labeled.

My prize box.

I made a lunch menu holder out of a picture mat, page protector, tape, and velcro.  I love how clean it looks hanging on the cabinet door. 

The recess clips are for when we do indoor recess stations.  It prevents too many students from being at one station.  

This file cabinet holds both my Fountas and Pinnell Benchmark Assessment Kits. 

The table caddy above was a utensil organizer from CVS.  I added ribbon from Michaels and my shrunk, cut, and laminated table signs. 
For more info on the drawers, hop over to {THIS} post. 

I used polka dot fabric and a staple gun to recover this chair. 

 I found black pocket charts from Scholastic!!   I used ribbon to tie them to the ends of my pocket chart.  I did this because 1. It looks pretty.  and 2. The pocket chart was wider than my stand.

The door decor above is in a packet I made in late August 2014.  You can click {HERE} to check it out. 


Here are photos of my classroom from past school years.  Click on the photos to find the products I used.  Thanks for taking a peek at my classroom!


The color signs are by Ashley Hughes :)

          The big book sign is by Rachel Lamb.

Click here to check out the number posters. 


  1. Lovely ... such a beautiful learning space.

  2. Love your room!! Just wondering... where did you get your polka dot borders and backgrounds?? lol I love them!!! My room will be polka dots and chevron this year, so they are perfect!!

    1. The borders are from Frog Street Press.

  3. Where did you get the 3 drawer storage that you had by your desk? I recall a picture you posted in the summer.

  4. Do you have any advice for organizing anchor charts? I seem to have them ALL over my classroom, and they can't get out of each other's way!

  5. How organized classroom's stuff are! I want to try organizing my kids' stuff in their room. Thanks~

  6. Beautiful room... did you blog about your warning board somewhere? I would love to know more about it.

  7. Adorable classroom and great content! I teach first grade in VA Beach and am glad to have come across your page. I'm going to add you to my 'Links I Love' page at my early ed. site
    . Hope you're enjoying the summer so far!


  8. I love your birthday wall idea. So cute to have their pictures up! How does your literacy center board work? I saw that there was velcro and do you just switch them each day? I don't have a good system for this so I need to find something!

    1. Hi Kandice, This packet explains it well: . The kids faces don't move but the signs above them do. I velcro the kids pictures on, so that if there is a problem, I can switch a student out of a group. Thanks for your interest!

  9. Love your classroom!!!! Could you please put the link to the laminator you mentioned in a previous post (can't find it). I'm getting ready to buy one on Amazon and remember you mentioning one for about $20. Thanks!

    1. The link is in this post, click the picture:

  10. In your supply caddy picture I noticed that you also have a plastic tub for each table. Wondering if this is a math manipulative tub? I'm thinking about trying that this year to save time. Did you already make a blog post about it that you could refer me too? Thanks, so much! I love your blog and TPT items!

    1. That was for book baggies. I now just have them keep their book baggies in their desk.

  11. I love your lime green supply caddy. Where did you get that? Thanks!

  12. Hi Erica,
    Did you paint metal or wood shelves black? Just wondering if you used spray paint or not. I will be doing a black shelving painting project this summer in my new classroom and I was just wondering what you used. Thanks for sharing and working so hard on your products in the TPT store.

  13. I guess I am piggy backing on Jennifer Elsaessers question. What type of paint did you use on wood and what type on metal. It seems to have covered evenly with no streaks.

  14. Thanks so much for these ideas. I definitely will be doing the "Spotted in 1st grade" theme this year. I am moving to first and wanted something different then my "Chicka Chicka/Jungle" kinder. I also will be jumping into the Daily 5 as well so...a little at a time will be my philosophy. :D Thanks.


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