Do you have cement walls in your classroom? If so, you may find yourself baffled by how to decorate, hang student work, and just make your classroom feel a little cozier and a little less institutional. We scoured the Web to find the best teacher hacks for cement classroom walls, and here are a few of the best ideas we came across.
1. Who knew? Vinyl sticks to cement!
Source: Kinder Craze
Good for: Inspiring nature lovers and brightening up your room
What you’ll need: Black vinyl sheets, colored card stock, scissors (Watch the tutorial for full directions)
2. Hang rain gutters with Velcro strips to create handy bookshelves.
Source: Teaching Madness
Good for: Rotating book displays
What you’ll need: Vinyl rain gutters from home improvement store, spray paint if desired, heavy duty Velcro strips,
3. Use shower caddies to organize a listening center.
Source: Clutter Free Classroom
Good for: organizing in tight spaces
What you’ll need: Command hooks, plastic shower caddies from the Dollar Store
4. Hot-glue dresser knobs to cement and hang cork board squares from them.
Good for: Giving each of your students their own personal display space
What you’ll need: Cement glue, drawer knobs, ribbon, cork board squares, scrapbook paper
5. Use blue painter’s tape to create a reference chart.
Source: Debbie Diller
Good for: Keeping word study front and center in the classroom
What you’ll need: blue painter’s tape, black electric tape, cut-out letters, masking tape, hot glue, hot glue gun (To secure individual pieces of paper stick a piece of masking tape on the wall first, then attach paper with hot glue to the masking tape. That way, when you want to change out displays all you have to do is peel off the tape!)
6. Paint a beautiful mural on your cement wall.
Good for: Teachers with permission from administration to do this.
What you’ll need: Paint (primer, plus regular latex paint or artist’s acrylic paint), brushes, painter’s tape, a drop cloth.
7. Tape or glue your favorite fabric up.
Good for: Fabric boards are great for making a classroom gorgeous. Also: hanging light things like student art, homework assignments, and anything else laminated or made of paper or fabric.
What you’ll need: painter’s tape AND hot glue. First apply the tape neatly, then cover the tape with hot glue, and finally lay the fabric up onto the glue. Voila!
8. Laminate colorful sheets of card stock and hot-glue them to create colorful frames.
Good for: An ever-evolving rotation of student work
What you’ll need: Hot glue, hot glue gun, laminator, construction paper, clothespins
9. Fake a bulletin board with craft paper.
Good for: Long-term, attractive displays.
What you’ll need: Painter’s tape, hot glue, large paper, a border, paper cut-outs for the display itself.
10. Better yet, create an interactive display.
Good for: Getting students involved in hands-on learning and assessment.
What you’ll need: Painter’s tape, hot glue, large paper, a border, paper cut-outs for the students to use.
11. Drill Baby, Drill!
Listen, we CAN get the facilities people in here to drill some holes and mount a proper cork board. What’s holding us back from just asking? It’s their job, and these walls are ridiculous. (Or, maybe you already have a blackboard or whiteboard drilled to the wall. If you can do without the writing space, cover it with fabric or paper.)
Good for: A sturdy, permanent place for hanging a rotating exhibit of word walls, student exhibits, anything you want.
What you’ll need: Drill, masonry bit, screws, a cork board.
Come share your favorite hacks for decorating on cement walls in our WeAreTeachers HELPLINE! Facebook group.
Also, check out 25 Fresh Spring and End-of-Year Bulletin Boards.