Apr 08

Brainstorming Creative Classroom Spaces for Next Year

After posting the other day on Does the space matter? I’ve had a few moments of inspiration, and I think I am already beginning to formulate a plan for next year’s classroom that will really encompass the vision I have not just for the classroom spaces but also for the attitudes of the students inside the classroom.

Explorers Wanted

At the Kennedy Space Center Visitor’s Complex there is an exhibit called Exploration Space: Explorers Wanted. They have some pretty cool artwork throughout that I would like to use as one of the theme inspirations for the classroom.

For my desk area?

Somewhere near door/board?

These are all themed around Mars, so I am thinking about taking the idea and making new posters that fit what we learn  about in Earth science (which does include some about Mars).

I also discovered these amazing vintage space travel posters through a Space Tweep friend. I adore these, and I think they fit well with the Explorers Wanted feel.

So I guess I have decided on a theme for next year: Explorers Wanted. I think this also fits well with the ideas I had about an Exploration Journal and/or Sketchbook Project in my classroom next year. It also fits the mindset I want my students to have when they come into my classroom. I want them to be explorers of the world around them, and what a better way to remind them that they are and can be explorers than immersing them in it through the spaces around them?

What do you think?




2 pings

  1. Marsha Ratzel

    Dear Janelle,
    Design of space matters….definitely. This sets a theme, and here’s my question….how you arrange the stuff inside your room to communicate this exploration idea? One of the things that challenges me is how to create physical space that pushes them to see the classroom as different because of the way they are seated and things are organized. I’ve been thinking little pods of desks with the computers (i have 2) in the center of the room instead of shoved off to the side.

    What are you thinking about that?

    1. Janelle

      That’s a really good question! I like the ideas that Krissy about making the classroom like an interactive museum, so those are some things I definitely plan on brainstorming how to incorporate. As far as the desks go, I tend to change my arrangement all the time in order to facilitate what we are doing. In my lab classroom, I have 16 2 person lab tables. I have had them together in two long rows like a traditional lab, in groups of four seats, and in groups of eight seats. In my classroom space, we have had a couple of different modified U shapes, groups of four, angled rows, and now we have some groups of four and some rows. (I asked the students how they would like to have the room arranged, and this was a common suggestion.) I guess my short answer is I change up the arrangement a lot any way to facilitate what we are learning at a particular time. Also, my ideas for desks may change next year as I am expecting larger classes than this year, which means more desks! (Right now my classes range from 29-32 students.)

  1. Stretching Forward » Blog Archive » Advanced Space Academy for Educators Day 4: We’re a team

    […] want I had been wanting for so long: Exploration Space posters! (I discussed these in my post about creative classroom spaces.) Of course I had to have the entire set. I love that gift […]

  2. Stretching Forward » Blog Archive » Decorating the classroom: Have I been doing it wrong?

    […] wanted for a long time and plan to get some of the vintage style solar system posters as well. (See this post for more information.) But I also decided I wanted to create a few posters of my own to really pull […]

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