Art Room Opening Day Photos 2013

art room opening day photos 2013


Ah, the first days of art. It is so neat and clean and organized in the art room….I just had to share some photos before the room reverts to its natural ‘studio’ state. Here are seven photos taken on opening day.

1. Table Colors and Numbered Seats

In the photo above you can see tables organized by color. All the seats are numbered – four seats to a table.

2. Rotating Jobs by Seat Number

Last year I rotated jobs by table. This year I am rotating jobs by seat number.

seat jobs

3. Rules Poster

My rules poster underneath the amazingly helpful Time Timer.

4. Elements Bulletin Boards

elements bulletin boards

New Organization Projects!!!!

I did three big organization projects:

  • Grade level prep boxes
  • Lesson plan organization
  • Free draw area

5. Grade Level Prep Boxes


grade level prep boxes

These boxes fit perfectly on my shelves, and are big enough to hold 12×18 paper and all my supplies for each project.

I have a big shelf unit on wheels.  I filled it with these yellow catering boxes from the local Jamba Juice smoothie shop. Three boxes fit perfectly on a shelf.  The boxes are large and great for organizing all the supplies. They will be really helpful for organizing prep for our parent volunteers.

(Note: see all that cut wire in the 5th grade prep box? Our parent volunteers just cut 100 3-ft. lengths of it in preparation for our Calder wire sculpture project next week. It all fits in the box with room to spare!).

6. Lesson Plan Organization

Lesson plans go into individual manilla envelopes. Turn the envelopes sideways, and they fit perfectly in my file drawers.

Lesson plans go into individual manilla envelopes.

I completely cleaned out all my lesson plan files this year. Each lesson plan (plus samples) is stored in an individual manilla envelope. I turned each envelope ‘landscape’ and labeled each one. Once turned sideways, they fit perfectly in my file cabinet. This makes me SO HAPPY. Imaginary angels sing when I open the file drawers and see all the organized glory.

(NOTE: I read about the manilla envelope method on Deep Space Sparkle. If you are looking for more ideas check out these great lesson plan organization ideas from Deep Space Sparkle).

7. Free Draw Area

free draw

On top:

In the cubbies below:

  • copy paper
  • origami paper
  • markers, one box per table
  • crayons, one box per table
  • peeled crayons
  • crayon cakes
  • art games

Let the games begin! Have a super new year everyone!


P.S. Click here to see our 2012 Art Room Opening Day photos

Did you make any changes to your art room this year?

Cupcake Holder = Great Organizer for Small Ceramics

Look what I found at the school bake sale! This awesome small ceramic storage container is actually a disposable  cupcake box.

cupcake holder storage


The box is holding 24 painted ceramic penguins. Each figurine fits into a cupcake well. The wings and flippers fit into little grooves around the well. The pieces are really secured in there!

These disposable cupcake boxes make great storage!

These disposable cupcake boxes make great storage!

The ceramic-filled cupcake box is heavy. I added a piece of masonite underneath as a tray.

Disposable bakery cupcake holder is great for organizing and storage.

Disposable bakery cupcake holder is great for organizing and storage.

Now the pieces are safely stored until the art show.




Glazing Made Easier

I saw a great post on glazing over at The Art of Education. I tried some of their tips today on our second grader’s melted marble pinch pots. They worked so well I just had to share.

glazing made easier


In a nutshell:

  • Put one color of glaze on each table
  • Match the glaze color to your table color if possible
  • Put brushes directly into the glaze (genius!!!)
  • Keep a piece of paper under your pot at all times – even when switching tables. This keeps your hands cleaner.
  • Carry pot from table to table to change colors
  • Brushes stay at their tables

In addition to the brushes, I put skewers directly into the glaze bottles. The students used the skewers to dot eyes or spots onto their animal pots.  Skewers allow more control than my brushes. I have also used the skewers to scratch lines into the glaze.

use skewers to dot on eyes


The result?

  • Easy set up – no water! No little cups of glaze.
  • Easy clean up – wipe the glaze bottle rims and recap.
  • No color contamination (note – I was anxious and kept a sharp eye on the white glaze. It stayed clean through three classes!)
  • No waste!!!!

Thanks so much to The Art of Education for sharing all your tips!


Do you have a glazing tip to share?

Art Room Opening Day Photos

First day of art.


Welcome to a new year in the art room. This year my room looks completely different, from layout to bulletin boards to organization, thanks to all my fellow art teacher bloggers and my dear friend Pinterest.

Now every table, supply bucket, and chair is colored coded.  Chairs are numbered as well (more art room organization photos on this post).

My value poster is made from construction paper in black, white and gray shades. Luckily, I had an O’Keeffe that matched!

Thanks to my colleague Nancy R. for the value poster idea.

Art Teacher Barbie again reigns supreme over the art room.

Every year I tell my students my dad banned Barbie dolls from our house. He felt his three daughters would turn into ‘clothes horses’ if Barbies made it through the door. So Art Teacher Barbie is my very first Barbie doll. She called my name from the toy department at Wal-Mart my first year teaching, and since then we have never been apart.

p.s. In the background you can see my new tempera cake rack (from Blick or Amazon). Hoping that will seriously reduce my clean up time.

Best wishes for a successful school year! May your kiln never explode, and may your messes be manageable.


Peek Inside The Art Room

Art classes start Monday and I just put the finishing touches on my art room. I love all the art room photos everyone is putting online. Here are a few shots from room 13!

Organizing samples:

I don’t use my filing cabinet for all my sample art projects. I store samples in boxes, one per grade level. The boxes fit perfectly in my cubbies.

Within each box, I store samples in individual manilla envelopes (I got this idea from Deep Space Sparkle).

Although I label everything, I do not have sets of beautiful full-color labels. I don’t have plastic tubs for everything (yet) – I am reusing old copy paper boxes and used manila envelopes.

Storing bulky work in progress:

Our weavings and sculptures in progress are just too bulky for table folders and flat files. Projects are stored individually in labeled gallon size Ziploc bags, clipped together by table and stored in a color-coded table box.

Color-coded table boxes store bulky projects in progress.

Organizing student work:

I have a ‘roly polies’ with one (labeled) flat drawer per class. They hold ALL the 2-D student art all school year until our spring art show. I store big boxes of watercolor paper underneath. I use the top of the cabinets as a place to dry our plaster masks and plaster sculptures.

We store student portfolios in the flat files. The are labeled with the name, grade, teacher. The student’s first initial goes in the upper right corner. This helps me find portfolios quickly.

Decorating cabinets:

Do you want to hang art on your slick laminate cabinets? I use a system of medium clear Command hooks and binder clips. It is really easy to change out art.

Tiny, clear Command hook and binder clip allows you to hang posters on laminate.

 Scrap paper:

I store scrap paper under the paper cutter, sorted by color (thanks to The Art of Ed for this tip).

Scrap paper is sorted by color and stored under the paper cutter.



Even though my 1975 (!) childhood encyclopedia set is out of date, it has TONS of photos and illustrations perfect for reference. As a bonus, it teaches kids how to use reference books.

My childhood encyclopedia set has tons of reference photos.

More art room photos next time!

More art room organization tips on this post.

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