Decorate Your Classroom: Decoration Ideas for Seasons and Holidays: Spring, Winter, Christmas, Valentine's Day and More!
Decorating a Classroom
Classroom decorating is one of the fun aspects of being a teacher. You can really use decorations to liven up a classroom or reinforce a lesson or topic. You get to show your artistic side while maintaining a professional side. You can use decorations to give your students a break from the normal routine. Whatever your reason, decorating a classroom can be a lot of fun!
Decorations for a Classroom
Recycling Pictures and Photos for Decoration
Decorating a Classroom
How often do you change the decorations in your classroom?
Classroom Decorating Tips
1. Keep it simple or it becomes too distracting. If you have too much going on in your classroom, your students can be distracted and can lose focus. Decorate simply, which also helps with budget, time and energy!
2. Save time and decorate just for the season. You could drive yourself nuts trying to decorate for every holiday. Save yourself some time and decorate for the seasons, keeping in mind a simple seasonal theme.
3. Let the students make the decorations and decorate the room. Students love to do anything that takes time from the actual curriculum, so this is a bonus for them. The trick is to tie the decorations to the curriculum. You can turn the directions into a vocabulary fill-in-the-blank. Important dates in history can be written on the decorations (leaves, pumpkins, flip flops, snowflakes…). Math problems need to be solved before the students color in a certain pattern. Sentences can be written on the decorations. Science definitions, recipes, exercises can be used, etc.
4. Be mindful of school policies concerning decorations. This may not be true of every school, but my school had policies concerning how we decorated our classrooms. First, we had to consider the 20% rule: only 20% of our walls were permitted to be decorated for fire safety reasons. When many decorations are made of flammable paper, it’s a decent rule to follow. Then, we were told to be considerate of how EVERYONE, not just ourselves, celebrated holidays. In other words, we couldn’t overdo it for Christmas, and Easter, thinking of those who do not celebrate those particular holidays even though the majority of the students did. Finally, if it was too far from the curriculum, then it should not be used. This is why I recommend connecting it to the curriculum. If the students actually learn something, then it is beneficial.
5. Reuse, Recycle! Don’t have the time or resources to decorate? You probably have some items you can use and display without a ton of effort. One trick is to reuse the photos or pictures from old calendars. Simply remove them from the calendar, laminate and voila! You have a seasonal or holiday decoration. You can also reuse old projects from students as decorations.
Below are ideas for both seasons and holidays.
Decorating for Winter
- Colors: blues, white, silver
- Boots, Scarves, Gloves
Decorating for Fall
- Colors: orange, red, yellow, brown
- Leaves with student names
Decorating for Summer
- Colors: red, blue, yellow, green
- Flip flops, surfboards, suns
- Palm trees
- Beach ball
Decorating for Spring
- Colors: Greens, pink, orange, yellow, purple, blues
- Birds, chicks, bunnies
Decorating a Classroom for Holidays
If you have the energy, time and money, you can certainly decorate for all holidays that you come across on your calendar. I have very little of those things, so I stick to the major holidays celebrated in the U.S.
The decorations I have listed below are student oriented, meaning that they make them and hang them. They are fairly easy and don’t require too much time. Keep in mind I am a Language Arts teacher, so most of my ideas are geared toward language, words, sentences, etc.
- Pumpkins with students’ names on them, key terms, definitions, reminders of classroom rules, vocabulary words, etc.
- Ghosts with fears students can overcome or interesting phobias
- Hand turkeys with five “I am thankful for…” sentences on the ‘feathers’
- Cornucopias with pictures or drawings inside of things to be thankful for
- Wreaths with overlapping hands explaining how or to whom they could be a helping hand
- ‘Presents’ with wish lists
- Light bulbs with hopes for the New Year that can be hung on a string
- Candles with a phrase about what lights up a student’s life
- Hearts with things or people they love
- Valentines with funny love poems
St. Patrick’s Day
- Shamrocks with ways to ‘go green’
- Leprechauns with jobs students can use to make a pot of gold
Easter (Spring Break, as it is known in many schools…)
- Eggs with haiku poems
- Bunnies, chicks, other baby animals
- Flowers, with adjectives about the students on the petals
- Flags with family members or friends who have served
- Red, white and blue stars with hopes for our country’s future
Dr. Seuss Decorations
Other Holidays to Decorate for in the Classroom
There are a few other holidays worth mentioning, like Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Columbus Day, Flag Day, etc. I have seen some great displays for MLK Day, especially ones with quotes from his “I have a dream..” speech and how they affect students today. Columbus Day is often overshadowed by the impending Halloween season, but I have known teachers to teach the history behind the day and incorporate it into their decorating. As for Flag Day, some schools are not open that long, while others are busy cleaning up for the end of the school year, so it depends.
What other holidays do you decorate for? I’d love to hear your ideas. I know I missed a few, so any input and feedback would be great!