Sunday, June 22, 2014

Bulletin Boards + Decor

I am such a sucker for pretty things.  Now, you KNOW that means my bulletin boards must match my pretty things mindset.  I know most Spanish teachers stick with the standard Spanish boards and I did too, for a while.  Then, a couple of years ago I started to make some changes.  I still like the content of my boards to be related to my subject matter (of course), but I don't like them looking traditional as I am anything but.  

In my old classroom, I had bulletin bulletin boards inside the room and also a nice wall outside of my classroom that I used.  I didn't make the best boards outside the room because I couldn't put up paper, borders, etc., but I still used the space like I did here with an extra credit project I did with my students asking them to portray why it's important to learn a second language.  I actually took this idea and am using it again as my start of the year bulletin boards for next year since I want to spark interest with my new students by featuring my old students.  In fact, I had a student make me the large Instagram poster (he drew and painted it) that I'm using again next year in a different purpose.

#WhyStudyLanguages bulletin board (outside of classroom) from 2012-2013 school year.
The inside of my old classroom from 2012-2013 that just showed the start of my Social Media board.  Ultimately the Pinterest side was decorated with real life pictures of vocabulary in the world and the Twitter side had different Tweets from students that were written up each day.  The Boggle board stayed looking like that and encouraged the students to make words from the letters shown in Spanish.
Now, in my new classroom (2013-2014), I embraced the idea of wrapping paper instead of bulletin board paper and even used some plastic tablecloths later in the year (sorry, no pic) along with tissue paper flowers and even some papel picado made by a student (cut up tissue paper used in many Day of the Dead celebrations).  Of course, I had a very "loud" room last year as my new room was desperate for some paint on the walls and I had to make due this year and cover up the disgusting leftover tape (that was practically glued to the wall) from moving in.  It took a year, but the room will be painted this summer so I don't need to cover anything up like you see I did below.

Zebra was the print of choice for 2013-2014 since I found a lot on clearance.  This isn't just my bulletin boards, but more the decor of my room.  You can see my pink bulletin board housed my contact info for the first day.  I left it up for a while, but wound up changing it to something else (below) later in the year.  The black board was intended to be a homeroom announcement board but I wound up not having a homeroom, so that changed pretty quickly.
This is an eclectic shot of my room.  I told you I had a lot going on.  But, I did love my shower curtain window with the map of the Spanish-speaking world used as the main focal point.  I also did a calendar on my side white board with washi tape.  I love how it looked, but I wound up ditching it about halfway through the year because I needed to use that space to put up daily objectives for the three levels I teach.
I wish I had a picture of both my bulletin boards with the directional maps my students painted onto butcher paper, but this is all I have.  We did a long lesson on giving and following directions and my students made several different maps, this being one of them.  I'm hoping I get some even better maps this coming year.  :)
Please forgive the yellow-y walls and trim, they're being painted this summer.  This is one of the two boards I've done for the 2014-2015 school year.  As I mentioned above, this is the extra credit project I had students do a couple of years ago.  I plan on switching out these pictures with my new students pictures once we complete this assignment as a project.  I also created the bottom border with different words used to explain why it's important to learn a second language.  Chevron is clearly the theme this year...actually, it's aqua and white chevron mixed with black and white polka dots that will be on my other two boards.
Though I'm re-using the Instagram sign a student created for me a few years back, this board is new all together.  I took inspiration from this Pin but realized I really couldn't do something like that on my door.  So, I took it inside my room and made a little bulletin board of snapshots of Spanish-speaking countries.  This was especially important to me because we'll be traveling to Spain for my FIRST trip abroad with students in 2016 and I wanted to make sure I had something to "sell" the trip to my incoming students.
I still have a lot of work to do in my classroom, but my hands are tied until everything is painted.  Hopefully this will help to inspire you.  What are your bulletin boards looking like??


  1. Love your #whystudylanguages! Do you have a rubric or handout you'd be willing to share? Hoping to motivate my level 1s with "words of wisdom" from both current and past "advanced" students! Merci/gracias!!

    1. Hi Kelli! Thank you so much for your comment. I didn't actually have a rubric for this as it was a last minute extra credit assignment I offered two years ago. What I did was have my students research reasons it is important to study a foreign language. Then when they found one that interested them, they had to make a decorative sign about their choice and photograph themselves holding it. Lastly, they had to upload it Instagram and hashtag it #whystudylanguages so I could find it. The way I "graded" the assignment was simple - they received 3 points if they blew me away, 2 if it was good, 1 if enough effort was made to warrant receiving extra credit. If I had received poor assignments, I would have not given extra credit, but that didn't happen. I hope that helps. If you develop something, I'd love to see what you come up with. :)

  2. I LOVE your room!! I always have the students answer why it is important to learn another language at the beginning of the year, and some enjoy it more than others, but if they knew they would have their picture taken with their answer, it might make them more interested! Also, the Para ti section of your classroom is great, to eliminate confusion! Thanks for sharing!