The students in my class mix different combinations of yellow, red, brown, and white tempera paint to replicate the color of skin. Paint bristles dip into the colors and brush over the stark white paper, filling in all the spaces. The range of colors from deep mahogany to amber hues dry on our metal paint rack in the corner of the room.
I strive to make sure my classroom is a welcoming place since I have had newcomers from Eritrea, Guatemala, and Somalia.
I have had Burmese refugees who came from living in Thailand refugee camps to run down apartments near our school. I have been teaching immigrant children from Mexico whose parents have walked across the border, risking everything to seek a better life for their families.
I always seek to inspire creativity from my students as well as spark their natural curiosities. I also aim to create a welcoming and inclusive community within my classroom, because I recognize that my own painted paper that is drying on the rack of my classroom is a different color than most of my students’.
Children who have experienced trauma need a welcoming comfortable space. The more attractive and well maintained the space is, the more students will feel valued and respected. I have worked hard to create my classroom space to feel like home. I have brought in lamps and hung up photos and tried to make it feel cheerful.
I want this space in my classroom to feel like safe and welcoming home.
I want students to feel as though they deserve the very best. The space in my room that I want to turn into a cozy nook is currently where we hang our coats an backpacks. It looks dingy and isn't used well. The transformation of this space will make the whole classroom feel homey and provide an area where students can cozy up with a book or work together on a project.
The space can also be used as an area where students can cool down if they are feeling overwhelmed or angry. We use a Mindfulness program and teach the importance of breathing and taking space to calm down. Currently students will go to the counseling room when they are having difficult feelings but this might provide a space in the classroom where students can find peace without having to leave our room.
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