When you hear the word “teacher,” what picture comes to mind? Perhaps you visualize a favorite teacher from your past or yourself with a lively group of students. Probably the picture of the four walls of your classroom does not come to mind. However, your classroom teaches too!  The way in which you equip, arrange, decorate, and organize your classroom makes an impact on the learning and behavior of your students.

Choosing color wisely
Colors in the classroom can effect your students’ emotions, activity level, and learning potential. Children respond to colors in different ways. The use of neon or red colors may have the negative effect of increasing activity and decreasing attentiveness in a hyperactive child. However, those same bright colors may energize and increase the participation of a lethargic child. If the child’s brain associates color with positive emotions, color can increase long-term retention of the content of your lessons. Conversely, if the color elicits an unpleasant emotional response, less learning may occur.

Colors listed below may illicit the following effects:

RedEngaging and emotive; disturbing to anxious learners, exciting to calm learners
YellowStress, caution, and apprehension; first color a person decodes in the brain
BlueMost tranquilizing universally increases feeling of well-being lowers stress
GreenCalming
BrownPromotes a sense of security, reduces fatigue
GrayMost neutral

Generally darker colors lower stress and increase feelings of peacefulness; brighter colors increase energy and creativity, but also have the potential of increasing aggression and nervousness.

Personalizing the classroom
You can increase students’ identification with their Sunday School classroom by posting their photographs and names. You might choose to display pictures of their families and pets. Younger children enjoy having their own attendance charts on the wall and and having a mailbox just for their things. When you display the students’ art work and learning activities in the classroom, they sense that you view their work as important. As students identify with their classroom, their comfort level increases and their minds can absorb instruction.

Instructing with the walls
Students learn in multi-dimensional ways involving seeing, smelling, hearing, and touching. Take advantage of the children’s learning potential by displaying visuals on bulletin boards and cork strips. Research indicates that children retain material better in classrooms where teachers use the walls to display information. To extend learning beyond the Bible time, hang teaching visuals at the children’s eye level .

Attractive bulletin boards not only extend the children’s learning, but also create favorable impressions with parents. Your RBP Teacher Book provides step-by-step plans for bulletin boards that coordinate with lesson themes. RBP has bulletin board borders, letters, and bulletin board books and kits available to make your work easier (1-800-727-4440).

Daria Greening
Seminar leader, Regular Baptist Ministries