Friday, August 12, 2016

Extreme Makeover Classroom Edition: FINAL Reveal

Hi all—The SuperHERO Teacher here! It’s finally time-- It’s time for me to reveal all of the fun changes that were made to Megan’s classroom!  For those of you who do not know, I received 900+ applicants for this $3,000 Classroom Makeover Giveaway that I hosted on my Facebook Page.  Megan’s application stood out in more ways than one and she was truly deserving of the prize!  Below, you will see a picture of her classroom before the makeover, and then you will see the dramatic changes we made to complete the project!

Megan’s classroom before the makeover didn’t accurately portray her incredible, bubbly, and powerful teaching style.  Here’s a few pictures prior to the makeover: 

…And here’s my vision for Megan’s classroom in action. 

1. NEW SEATING. The most powerful impact in the new classroom came from the new seating that I purchased from School Outfitters.  I knew I wanted the old desks replaced with something that fostered collaboration amongst students, which is why I chose group seating as you can see in the pictures.  On each desk, I placed a file holder that will serve as means of organization.  Students can turn in their homework and classwork to the bins as well as receive new handouts in the folders.  This saves time and energy for Megan!  Lastly, I provided pens, pencils, erasers, rulers, scissors and other school supplies for the students in each group. 


2. NEWLY DESIGNED BULLETIN BOARDS.  I designed two different bulletin board sets for Megan’s classroom.  She teaches high school English and AVID, which is a course that prepares students for life after high school, specifically college.  I knew I wanted to dedicate a bulletin board for each class.  On the left side of the classroom, you’ll see a “Novel Suggestions” board which is designed to encourage independent reading amongst students.  Students read a book outside of class, fill out a book review sheet with a picture of themselves reading the book or of their favorite reading spot, and it is displayed on the board.  Their peers can then look at the board and find suggestions.  If you like this bulletin board and would like to use it in your classroom, you can find it here! On the right side of the classroom, I designed a bulletin board titled “Choose Your Path” which was designed to help students research the different college options in their state.  In the center, you have the state of Minnesota with all of the top colleges and their statistics.  On the right side, there are QR codes that students can scan that link back to the colleges for additional information.  The boards definitely brought color to the room and gave it a more polished and cohesive look. 


3. BOOK BISTRO – UNIQUE STUDENT SEATING. Every middle and high school ELA teacher dreams of having a nook specifically designed for students to get comfortable and fall in love with reading again.  Knowing that, I purchased unique seating and tables from IKEA to create a “book bistro” in Megan’s classroom.  The bistro has a coffee shop feel to it and is decorated to give the students a bit of a getaway from their daily school related troubles.  Some incredible TpT authors donated books for this section of the classroom, too! The chalkboard piece is meant for students to write their favorite quotes from the books they are reading in the bistro! 



4. NEW TEACHER DESK & SUPPLIES.  Megan’s current desk was not up to par and didn’t serve as a great place for her to grade, create lesson plans, and escape once the day is complete.  I purchased her new desk from IKEA.  I loved that this desk was split into two sections because the right side of the desk is meant for student-teacher conferences and tutoring.  A student can sit with Megan, discuss goals, or re-learn a concept, while Megan still has her personal space.  If you’re interested in learning more about student-teacher conferences, click here! In addition, Kate and I designed and painted "Mrs. Hoffman" to pull everything together.  I purchased Megan new grading pens, XL sticky notes, a planner, desk d├ęcor, and everything she could possibly need throughout the school year.  She’s honestly probably set for a few years! 



5. MOTIVATION STATION.  With so much negative energy traveling the halls of a high school, I wanted a way for students to share positive thoughts with each other when they’re in Megan’s class.  Knowing that, I created a “Motivation Station” where students can use a chalkboard pen to share positive thoughts with their peers—whether it be a famous quote or something more personal! 


6.  MOTIVATIONAL POSTERS. To bring the room together, I created and printed large neon themed posters with inspiring quotes to post around the classroom.  I also created large “READ. WRITE. THINK.” bubble letters as a daily reminder that reading, writing, and thinking, lead to success in life after high school. To find the bundle, click here! 


The reveal was more than I could ever imagine.  Megan was so grateful and she truly appreciated everything that went into the process.  It was a pleasure working with Megan and her helpful administration!  My hope is that this makeover encourages her to continue making a difference in her students’ lives for many years to come. 

If you are interested in implementing these designs in YOUR classroom, I have created a bundle of my creations.  You can find them here

Lastly, I want to say a special thank you to these incredible TpT sellers for all of their help, encouragement, and book donations:

Thank you for reading!  To see more updates, follow me on Teachers pay Teachers, Facebook, and Instagram @thesuperheroteacher!

The SuperHERO Teacher

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Extreme Makeover Classroom Edition: Traveling Crew & TpT Sellers

Hi everyone!

This process could not have been completed without a very supportive and hard-working crew, friends, and incredible TpT sellers who were willing to donate books for the classroom library.  I am so impressed and in awe of the people who stepped up to make this process possible, and because of that, I am dedicating this post to those individuals!

First, let me introduce you to my traveling crew: Alicia, Jesse, and Roxanne (AKA mom). 

On the left, you’ll see Roxanne.  Roxanne is the most generous and hard working person I know and I’m proud to call her my mom.  I don’t know what I did to be blessed with such a wonderful mother and best friend, but I am SO thankful.  She was the “Vice President of Miscellaneous Things” which meant she literally did a little bit of everything from cutting Velcro strips to driving 10 hours both ways from Ohio to Minnesota.  The true SuperHERO is my mom! I love you! 

In the middle, you’ll see Jesse (we call him Yesse, but that’s a story for another day).  He is also a teacher and we started at the same school 4 years ago! Jesse was “The Builder Extraordinaire” because for 2 days straight, he was building IKEA furniture and putting together the awesome new desks for Megan’s classroom.  Despite the intense heat & lack of air conditioning, Jesse persevered, lost 80 buckets of sweat, and built furniture with poise and perfection! Just a week before this trip, he got back from traveling abroad for a month, so I am thankful he was able to give up his sleep and rest to help make this dream come true! Thanks, Yesse! 

On the right, you’ll see Alicia, you may also know her as Miss S’s Supports!  If you don’t follow her on TpT already, you can click here! Alicia and I are co-teachers together and she is quite possibly the kindest and most beautiful soul I know—she even greeted ME with a gift, when in all actuality I should be giving HER the gifts for helping!  Alicia was “The Creative Connoisseur”.  The name speaks for itself.  With Alicia’s help, we were able to visualize the classroom, bulletin boards, and seating in such a way that only a creative eye could! We put up both bulletin boards together and she saw things in a way that I couldn’t even imagine!  Her creativity transpires in her teaching and products, too!  

In addition to my traveling crew, I am indebted to the TpT sellers who donated on Go Fund Me.  Together, they all raised $600!!! That’s incredible!  That $600 helped purchase books and school supplies for the students and Megan was so grateful for everything that went into the classroom, thanks to these individuals!

To thank these sellers, I dedicated a book in each of their names.  Below, you’ll see pictures of all of the sellers to donated.  If you don’t already follow them on TpT, Instagram and Facebook, I would strongly suggest doing so!  I’ve linked their names beneath the pictures!

Again, this experience wouldn’t be possible without these amazing people.  Thank you all so much…. And as for my followers, thank YOU for encouraging me throughout the process!

The SuperHERO Teacher

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Extreme Makeover Classroom Edition: Behind the Scenes

Hi everyone!  We’ve all been anxiously awaiting the reveal of the classroom makeover giveaway that I’ve been promoting for the past few months, so I’ve decided to split the reveal into 5 sections because so much went into this project, and I want to show everyone the entire process! 
Here are the dates of the blog posts:
  1. Extreme Makeover Classroom Edition: Behind the Scenes | August 6, 2016
  2. Extreme Makeover Classroom Edition: Traveling Crew | August 7, 2016
  3. Extreme Makeover Classroom Edition: GRAND Reveal | August 8, 2016
  4. Make Your Classroom First Day Ready | August 9, 2016
  5. The Importance of Classroom Climate | August 10, 2016

Okay, now let’s talk about what you’re REALLY here for! What went into this classroom makeover?
First of all, the giveaway was a huge success—bringing in more than 900 applicants!  I read every. single. application.  I wanted to make sure the winner of the $3000+ giveaway was the best fit for the contest, and Megan certainly was!  I remember reading Megan’s application and getting goose bumps.  I immediately had my crew read her story and we all simultaneously agreed that she was the one who deserved this the most!  

Megan was so excited to be part of such a huge giveaway!  The quick responses from her administration, co-workers, and students made the process much easier than I anticipated.  Within 24 hours, Megan sent me pictures of her classroom as is.  Below, you’ll see those images and hopefully you can see how instantly, my brain started creating a vision for the classroom’s new look

So what exactly was the process?
1    The first purchase I made included new seating for the classroom.  Megan’s current desks didn’t allow for much wiggle room for her OR her students, so I knew I wanted something that would open up the room a bit more and allow for collaboration amongst the class.  I found these incredible group desks and chairs from School Outfitters and they truly made the biggest impact in the room.  Megan needed a minimum of 36 seats for students, so that meant purchasing 9 group desks and 36 chairs.

           2. From there, I needed to pick a color scheme.  One morning, I was walking around Target and of course, I ended up in the Dollar Spot.  I saw the bright colored bins in the picture below, and instantly knew that I had picked the theme of the classroom.  I wanted to bring color to the room while still making it high school appropriate—which meant neon colors mixed with black was a perfect option! 

3    Once the theme was chosen, I spent many late nights planning, drafting, and creating the design of the classroom.  I had 2 giant bulletin boards to fill and a ton of blank space on the walls to make the room pop.  Every poster, bulletin board, and product in the room that you’ll see, I created.  I wanted there to be a lot of personal touches, so that’s what I did!

4    Every very high school English teacher dreams of having unique seating in their room to inspire students to read independently and fall in love with a book.  You know what that means, right?  A trip to IKEA was in store!  I went to IKEA with a vision of creating a “Book Bistro” in a corner of Megan’s classroom.  I wanted it to have a coffee shop vibe with cozy seating and a ton of books.  Below, you’ll see the table and chairs I chose. 

5    After I had every inch of the space planned, all products created, and a million trips to Office Max completed, I was ready to focus on our trip to Minnesota.  I brought along with me some incredible individuals who made this whole process possible.  Alicia from Miss S’s Supports, Jesse from the school I taught at the past 4 years, and my mom are the true heroes here!  I wanted to thank them for all of their efforts, so I surprised them with coffee mugs I designed and lunch boxes filled with goodies! PS: you’ll get to meet these individuals in my next blog post!

6    We had everything planned, it was just time for execution.  We loaded up the car and began our journey from Ohio to Minnesota.  It was a lengthy 10 hours, but we had a blast laughing and getting to know each other on a deeper level! Let me just tell you, though... My little Nissan Rogue was JAM packed!!! 

Tomorrow, you’ll get to meet my crew AND learn of all the incredible Teachers pay Teachers sellers who donated to this giveaway!  On Monday, I’ll post pictures of the GRAND reveal! Stay tuned!

Happy Saturday—

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