Here’s the thing about classroom bulletin boards… some people LOVE making them and some totally despise them. I’ve always been a bit of a mixture. Putting them up is fun but taking them down is something I have to force myself to do. No matter what side of the bulletin board aisle you sit on, they serve an important purpose for our students. They serve as anchors. They can be decorative and make your classroom feel more like home or they can serve as powerful reference tools.
If you’re looking for a little classroom bulletin board inspiration or you’re new to 1st/2nd grade this year this is going to be the bulletin board post for you. Read on!
Having a mixture of seasonal and year-round bulletin boards seems to be the magic spot for many teachers. This mixture keeps things relevant for your students and helps manage your workload.
Click on any of the links below to jump to that section or keep scrolling to explore all the classroom bulletin boards!
Year-Round Classroom Bulletin Boards
Year-round bulletin boards generally focus on elements of your classroom that are static and need reinforcement all through the school year. Think routines, procedures, and expectations. These are also bulletin boards that are permanent (as in you keep them up all year) but have elements within them that are changeable.
These four bulletin boards are boards that a lot of Kindergarten through 3rd-grade teachers use. They’re not all 100% necessary but they’re pretty common.
1. Calendar and Daily Schedule
Having a classroom bulletin board dedicated to a calendar and your daily schedule can serve different purposes based on what grade you teach. If you’re teaching K-1 these are great for teaching the basics like days of the week and months of the year. If you’re teaching 2nd grade and up calendars serve to answer the question you will hear literally thousands of times, “What’s next?” You don’t have to answer that question anymore. Just point to the schedule/calendar on your wall. More ways to promote independence are always a good thing in my book! Bonus, having a calendar/schedule classroom bulletin board can be a great reference for students who are still learning how to write dates properly.
DOWNLOAD THE CALENDAR SET HERE
2. Content (Objectives) Board
Depending on your school district this bulletin board can be something your admin requires you to display. Content or objectives boards are those classroom bulletin boards that usually have subjects across the top and space to fill in “I can…” statement or the target skills of the week. The general skeleton on this board stays the same and may look something like the board below.
As you move through standards you can change out the targetted skills to keep this board up to date. Using page protectors or bulletin boards can make this bulletin board SUPER easy to update. Just print your objectives out and swap them for the last set.
DOWNLOAD THE MATH BULLETIN BOARD SET HERE
3. Bravo Board
Download I Can Statements HERE
4. Birthday Board
This one is just for fun and it’s an easy way to make your students feel special. It can be part of your calendar/schedule bulletin board or it can be its own thing. There are a lot of cute ways to design a birthday bulletin board. Here’s an image of the Birthday Board elements included in the Classroom Set Up pack.
This category of classroom bulletin boards are the ones that you’re going to have to explicitly teach your students to reference. With consistent practice, they’ll be using these reference boards independently which will free you up to focus on teaching new material!
1. Writing Expectations
You will probably need a writing bulletin board this year. Our little learners are coming into our classrooms with a huge range of writing abilities. Some will be impressive paragraph writers and others will be working hard to write in complete sentences. A writing bulletin board provides your students with clear expectations of what grade-level writing looks like. It also provides a convenient place to chart their progress through the editing process. If you haven’t had a chance to check out the writing bulletin board take a peek below!
2. Sound Wall
If you’re teaching early literacy and your school is shifting towards science of reading practices, a sound wall may be something that you need in your classroom. Keep in mind that sound walls don’t magically create fluent readers. They need to be paired with explicit instruction and students need to be taught how to use them.
Click here to dive a little deeper into the classroom sound wall.
There are a lot of great bulletin boards that can be added to your library. You can use library bulletin boards to post the jackets of popular book series or let students document what book they’re currently reading. However, I’m going to petition that you use part (or all) of your library bulletin board to set “good reader” expectations. As our students walk the road to fluency we need to be clear about what good readers look and sound like. Here’s an example you can use in your classroom. I like to keep this board up year-round since those Winter & Spring Break wiggles always kick in and my students sometimes need a gentle reminder of what independent reading is.
Data collection bulletin boards are required by some school districts. Double-check with your admin if there are any pieces of data you’re required to post in your classroom. When displaying student data remember that there are pros and cons to having this data up for everyone to see and such public displays may not be right for your classroom. Use your best judgment.
There are all kinds of data that can be added to a bulletin board but some common data bulletin boards are stamina trackers, minutes spent in online learning tools, and skills progress (like fact fluency).
Social-Emotional Learning Classroom Bulletin Boards
Academic-focused bulletin boards are so valuable but if you have the space, social-emotional learning bulletin boards are definitely worth the wall space. They can provide quick touch points for expectations in how we treat one another and ourselves. Plus, since these expectations don’t really change these bulletin boards can be left up and reinforced all year round.
1. Calm Down Corner
2. Growth Mindset
A board to remind your students what a growth mindset is and how we can flip our language to build one is always a great idea! It can be a great reminder during tough spots in their learning.
A favorite of mine is a bulletin board that promotes good citizenship. Sometimes students need a reminder to think before they speak or to be bucket fillers instead of dippers.
Seasonal Classroom Bulletin Boards
1. Math/Reading/Social Studies/Science Bulletin Boards
These boards are similar to the objectives/content bulletin boards but they’re focused on one subject and they’re much more in-depth. Generally, I keep these focused on domains instead of individual standards. In 2nd grade math, this means starting the year with a numbers & operations board. For a science board, you may include life cycle directed drawings. You can add in vocabulary or student work samples. Whichever you prefer!
Download the Set
Welcome Back to School
If you search Pinterest or Google you’re going to find A LOT of Welcome Back to School bulletin boards. There are endless ways to welcome your students to a new year. Take a look at the Back to School Bulletin Board Ideas post for way more ideas!
Holiday boards are so cute and keep your classroom festive but are definitely a lot of work. If you want an easy board, try the holiday lapbooks. Use them to lead some fun holiday lessons with your students then staple them to your bulletin board.
Interactive bulletin board are GREAT because they give your students some ownership over a piece of the classroom that is largely created for them. Check out this post for an in-depth look at interactive bulletin boards.
DOWNLOAD THE SET HERE
Classroom Bulletin Boards
There are SO MANY cool and useful bulletin boards you can put up in your classroom. The best part? If one of these just isn’t working for your students there are a ton more ideas to replace it!
If you’re hard at work designing the perfect learning environment for your students, check out some our our classroom set up posts below!