Extreme Classroom Makeover: Mission Friends Edition

Have you ever felt like you were drowning in “stuff” in your Mission Friends classroom? Maybe the counter is covered with important stuff like…

  • markers
  • construction paper
  • a hole punch
  • yarn
  • scissors
  • attendance sheet
  • your Bible
  • your car keys


Try these hints for organizing all that stuff!

  • If your classroom has cabinets or shelves, arrange construction paper, drawing paper, poster board, and other teaching materials so items don’t clutter up the teaching space.
  • Designate a container for duplicate items that you will DONATE to other classrooms or to an area school supply drive.
  • Purchase several inexpensive plastic bins or baskets from a local discount store.
    • Sort through markers, pencils, and crayons.
    • Test each piece to make sure it works. Then TOSS those that don't.
    • Place each type of writing utensil in its own bin or basket.
    • Place the baskets on a shelf or in a cabinet where you can get to them quickly and easily during a session.
  • Create a file for storing favorite activities to KEEP for future use.
  • If cabinets and shelves are not readily available in the classroom, STORE teaching supplies in a closet outside the classroom. Gather items before each session and return them following the session.
  • Use sheets or plastic tablecloths to cover items on the wall that are not related to the teaching session.
     

Preschoolers need space to move, but what if your room is wall to wall furniture? Removing a wall can sometimes be a good solution, but this might not be very practical. Before you start swinging a sledgehammer…

 

Consider these space saving options:

  • Create space by removing unnecessary furniture from the classroom.
  • Use the floor for visuals and games.
  • Provide an area rug or quilt for preschoolers to sit on.
  • Interest areas such as Blocks, Puzzles, Art, and Homeliving provide excellent opportunities for learning. If space is limited, consider setting up fewer interest areas each week, alternating the types of available activities from week to week.
  • For a drawing surface, provide lap-size pieces of cardboard.
  • Bold colors can make a small room feel even smaller. Try soft colors such as pale green, blue, and yellow.
  • Stay positive! Preschoolers will pick up on your attitude about the classroom.

 

Take time this week to jot down at least two challenges you face in preparing to teach preschoolers in your current classroom. Think through how each challenge might be overcome using one of the suggested tips. Spend time in prayer, asking God to help you overcome those challenges by giving you courage to try new ideas that might be out of your comfort zone.

An uncluttered room looks larger, making teaching and learning easier, without being distracted by “stuff” you don't need. Make a list of things you want to “make over” in your classroom. What do you need to KEEP, TOSS, STORE, or DONATE? When you are no longer drowning in the “stuff,” you will find more joy in teaching your preschoolers.

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