May 19, 2009

End of the Year Art Room Prep

The last week of school is here! I've been taking my time
at prepping for summer & the next school year.
  • The kids art work is the first thing that needs to go! I still have a few things left, but for the most part all of that was handed back last week or the week before.
  • I also started a few purging activities. I know that most art teachers are natural pack rats, but that can get you in a whole lot of trouble. I tend to purge things throughout the year, but at the end of each year I evaluate what I've been using, and what just doesn't seem to serve a purpose anymore. GET RID OF STUFF PEOPLE!! YOU CAN DO IT!! I'm a bit OCD, and have issue with it is a bit easier for me, but I think it is important that we all do this.
  • Take an inventory of what supplies you have, and what you will need for the next school year. I usually have an order ready to go for the next school year(even though I'm not able to place it till Sept/Oct). Be ahead of the game so you know what projects you have supplies for to start the year!
  • CLEAN! CLEAN! CLEAN!!!! I usually have my last class or two go through all of my supply boxes(I've got a total of 14 boxes per supply) and check for broken, dried up, over sharpened..etc supplies! I give a table or two all my marker boxes and a piece of paper. I have them make a circle about the size of a quarter and color it in to see if the markers are dried out or not. Then we see what colors we are lacking from the box and replace them with new markers I give a couple other tables all my crayon boxes, and have them pull out little nubs and paper. I like to get rid of anything smaller than half, and put some new crayons in their place. With colored pencils, we check for split, too small, and shavings in the box. I also have those students sharpen the remaining pencils and then add new to the box. That way they are clean & prepped for the next school year.
  • I go through my classroom and see if anything isn't working ergonomically. What supplies can I put away on the top shelf of my supply closet and what do I need easier access too! Getting these things taken care of now at the end of the year will make a smoother beginning to the next.
  • Art for the hall ways! WHAT?? Yep, I have students create some art that I'll hang at the start of the school year. I use a different color theme in my room each year(on a 5 yr rotation). I also love turtles. So the last week of school I have my students make turtles in that color them that will be hung outside my room for the first day of school! It helps set the mood for the year, I feel.
  • I'll also start working on my bulletin boards for the following year. I hand make my letters, boarders...pretty much everything. So, anything I can get done now helps me out a ton!!! Plus, this is a great time to laminate things. Usually at the start of the school year, the classroom teachers are so busy laminating is either always busy or empty by the time I reach it! I find that at the end of the school year, there is less demand.
  • If time allows, I'll also go through all my example boxes(I have 5 boxes: paintings, weavings, collage, drawings, and odds & ends.) and make sure everything is where it belongs and that I don't have 20 examples of the same project. I try to get my duplicate examples to my student teachers, but there are times that they build up. I have 5 of some grade when I start the project fresh with each class....the examples pile up!
I hope this helps some of you! If you have any tips, please share!!


  1. Ted- You make such a great point, that I think too many teachers forget... KID POWER. Kids not only need to learn to take pride in their learning environment, they embrace the chance to help maintain it. I too am a big fan of enlisting their help at the end of the year.

  2. I just stocked up on the cheap shaving foam and will soon enlist the help of the kids to create with the foam - in turn they are really cleaning the tables for me!! Plus, the room smells so fresh!

  3. Can you point me in the right direction to take inventory of a school - each classroom's art supplies for the principal? Thanks, I know there must be something out there. I started to make my own but thought , "This is so inefficient!!". Merci,