Classroom Floor Plan Building a classroom that flows easily and allows the students to be productive in their learning environment is an essential part of being a teacher. The floor plan sets the mood, and the teacher sets the tone of the classroom. Without a cohesive plan that works well for both the students and the teacher, learning could become inhibited. As a teacher safety is of utmost importance, but I also wanted to make sure materials were accessible to promote a positive learning environment.
I feel that I have designed a great floor plan that will be both functional for my students and allow me as a teacher to develop an inquiry based classroom with ease. I think my floor plan would work well with first through third graders, but when designing my classroom, I initially had second graders in mind. The narrative that follows will take you through my thoughts and feelings about the arrangement of each section of furniture and how it contributes to the flow and accessibility of the students to the teacher, as well as the students to materials.
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I have chosen to arrange my classroom with an inquiry based learning atmosphere in mind. I want my students to be able to feel as if the classroom is their home away from home where learning can be fun, creative, and a thought provoking process. Therefore as you walk through the door, to the right I have set up some coat hangers where students can put their jackets, bike helmets, sweat shirts or any other belongings they may have brought with them for the day. Then to the left of the door I have a shelf of cubby holes with the name of each student in alphabetical order.
As the students enter the classroom each day they will take a folder from their cubby which will hold their essential documents with the day’s assignments. Written on the white board will be a writing prompt where the students are to write several sentences in their journals. As they begin their day with writing prompt, I can quickly go to the cubbies to see who has not picked up their work folder and mark them absent on the roll sheet. The desks are set in a horse show shape design to allow the teacher to have access to all the students quickly and efficiently.
This design also permits the teacher to easily switch students around without a great deal of disruption. Another great element of this design is that I have the students in pairs, therefore when partner work is needed the students can easily work together on the materials. However, I have placed a large table which is labeled group work behind the student’s desks, where students can work in larger groups, do bigger projects, or attend a station activity. The desks are all facing forward looking towards the whiteboard/smart board at the front of the classroom.
Many classrooms in the county in which I live are equipped with smart boards that are connected to a laptop at the teacher’s desk. The smart board is used by the teacher to show videos, display pictures, project lessons and allows the teacher to write with dry erase markers directly onto the screen, therefore the smart board acts as an all purpose media center. To the left of the smart board I have a bulletin board set up with the expected rules of behavior and consequences if misbehavior happens.
Below the bulletin board is a small shelf with a basket for sharpened pencils and a basket for unsharpened pencils. I intend to have a large quantity of pencils sharpened at all times in the sharpened pencils baskets. If a student’s pencil becomes dull or breaks, they will deposit their pencil in the unsharpened basket and grab a new pencil from the sharpened basket. This lets class room activities to continue without the disruption of activities every time a student needs to sharpen their pencils.
To the right of the whiteboard I have a designated reading area for the students. My intention for this area is to allow the students a comfortable place to silent read in a relaxing atmosphere. The reading area will have a bright colorful rug as the base to the center. Then catty corner against the wall are several book shelves which will house a variety of books at different reading level to entice the students to engage in the reading process. On the outer borders of the rug are bean bag chairs along with large and small pillows.
The chairs and pillows are represented by two couches on my classroom floor plan. My thought behind the reading center is to make reading as enticing as possible. When I read a book at home I do not sit at a desk and thumb through pages, I get comfortable on my couch and really enjoy the book. Therefore I want the students to stretch out on the rug with a pillow or sit back in the bean bag and let the words come to life. The next designated area that I have set up for students is the listening rug. The listening rug is where students will gather to do morning activities.
The wall in this area will have a calendar, weather chart, rules of the listening center and instructional posters. I have designed the listening center to be located next to the teacher’s desk, so that I can easily bring my chair from behind the desk to the edge of the rug and engage with the students. On the listening run I intend to do activities such as reading a book to the students, sharing my thoughts for the day, listening to students read and share important news. The small light green square on the listening rug is where I will have an easel, with a large writing tablet.
On this tablet is where I will demonstrate writing techniques, brainstorm ideas, and my thoughts as I begin to write. I feel an important part of teaching is sharing your own thoughts, ideas, and struggles that come up when I write. The easel will also serve as a way for students to share a piece of artwork, poster or writing assignment with the other students of the class. Next to the listening center I have set up the teacher’s desk, which faces towards the students desks. I can sit at my desk and keep an eye on all the students in different areas of the room.
At the end of my desk I have back to back shelves set up. On the shelf facing inward toward the teacher will be material which is off limits to the students. Then on the shelf facing outward will be the beginning of the art center. The art center is designated with the color red. In the center is a large round table for students to gather and work on art projects together as a group. This table will also be an activity station for students during designated times. Around the art table are three easels set up to allow the student’s imagination flourish.
The easels will be set up with a large writing tablet on one side and poster boards on the other side. These easels will allow the students to thoroughly engage in the inquiry process when assigned a research topic. Rounding out the art center is a shelf for art supplies, a sink to wash brushes, hands, and other supplies. Lastly a cubby for allowing their art work to dry. Along the back wall next to the art work cubbies will be a pair of closets that will house teaching supplies and materials. Then we are back at the entrance door and homework/storage cubby holes.
To the right of the homework cubby holes is the technology center which is designated with three dark purple desks. The technology center is set up to allow students to become familiar with technology. They can do some research through encyclopedia websites, and play learning games online. To the right edge of the computers will be a shelf that will house a printer which will allow students to print any research they have done or work they have typed. The shelf will also be a place for holding printer paper, a stapler and paper clips so that the students can organize their work.
On the other side of the print shelf is a large crescent shaped desk that will allow the teacher to help small groups of students, administer one on one help, or give an assessment test. I think having a crescent shaped desk is an invaluable tool for a teacher to really connect with students on an individual basis. Above the technology center and crescent tables are large rectangular shaped windows, which will display the student’s hard work. Displaying students’ work, whether it be art work, journal writing, or posters is an essential part of helping your students gain self confidence and pride in their school work.
Therefore I intend to keep my classroom windows, wall above the reading center book shelves, and the walls of the art center blank canvasses to be filled with pride of our students’ work. I want each student to feel as if they are valued and a part of the classroom community. I think overall I have set up a classroom that flows well from area to area. The students have access to a wide variety of supplies and stations which allow each student to feel welcome to engage in the learning process.