I get a lot of compliments on my classroom. It’s not the typical high school classroom, and I’ve worked hard to make it that way. When I started teaching, I tried to make my room look like a carbon copy of my mentors, I had my desks the same way, my personal desk in the same area, the books on the shelves the same..ect. As I began teaching, I soon realized, I was very uncomfortable teaching in my own room. Lets face it, we as teachers spend a lot of time in our classrooms, so why shouldn’t it feel a little more “homey”? So I brought in some new lights, moved my desks into an oval formation, bought a nice scented “plug-in” and decorated a bit with plants and such. I keep my windows uncovered, to let in natural light, and often play music when the students are working at their seats or taking exams. Now, at first I was a little worried that my principle might think I was crazy, but two evaluations later, he praised my strategy and told me he saw great work being done by my students. Even other teachers enter my room and say, it just seems so comfortable here.
My point is this, classroom environment is important. High school classrooms are usually so sterile and dull. Why does this have to be? If our students are comfortable and happy, do they don’t learn better? I think so, and I have the research to back it up. Feel free to check out these links, or just give some comments on your thought concerning environment.