DIY Classroom Ideas for the Reading Room


I love crafting, and there are plenty of DIY classroom ideas you can try to do for your classroom. I have decoupaged shoe boxes for returned papers, made crate seats and so many other things. In this post, I’ll share a few ideas you might try out.

DIY classroom ideas for word study

First up is this twist on soccer.  These little mini balls work perfectly for word work, but you could also write comprehension questions, vocabulary words from the book you’re reading, overused words (and have kids brainstorm replacement words), or homonyms.  Just toss the ball and answer the question your right thumb lands on.  Games are lots of fun, and they can purposefully be used to review or teach new skills.

diy classroom ideas for word study

DIY classroom ideas for your centers

diy classroom ideas for centers

Sometimes a few fresh manipulatives can liven up lessons.  Dollar Tree has just put out their spring goodies, and in the stash, I found the bug kits. The magnifying glasses work really well for framing text evidence or for word hunts. For the little people, you can find all kinds of fancy pointers. Use these for I Spy, identifying details in a group article or poem, or for tracking print.  

Even themed erasers can add to your inventory of teaching tools as game markers or score keepers. I picked up these car themed erasers to use with my Parking Lot game.  I’ll share that freebie at the end of this post, but you’ll have to head over to Dollar Tree to pick up your own markers. ๐Ÿ™‚

cookie sheet DIY classroom ideas

Cookie sheets can be used for so many different things. With a can of spray paint, you can make them bright and colorful for a gameboard background or turn them into a chalkboard. You can also use contact paper to dress them up. Add magnetic tape to any printable gameboard and game pieces for storage ease. Cookie sheets and pizza pans can also be made into reminder boards for missing homework, attendance, or memoes for the day.  Just search on Pinterest, and you’ll find all sorts of ways to use them.


DIY classroom ideas with shower curtains and plastic tablecloths


Shower curtains and plastic tablecloths work well for DIY activities too. With a sharpie and a little bit of drawing talent, you can turn these items into Jeopardy boards, Boggle boards, Letter recognition boards, and Twister sightword boards. Add in bean bags, and you can work in a little movement too.  Here are a few pictures of what you might try.  

Another way to use plastic table clothes is to create vocabulary graffiti or comprehension projects like the one to the left.


For other DIY reading or classroom ideas, check out my classroom ideas Pinterest board. With a little bit of time and a few inexpensive supplies, you can streamline classroom storage, spice up teaching strategies and lessons, and spark creativity in your kids. As I mentioned earlier, I have a freebie to share with you.  Remember you can find those cute transportation themed erasers at Dollar Tree.  How fun, right??

other back to school ideas you might like:

What have you made for your classroom? Share in the comments below.


Carla is a licensed reading specialist with 27 years of experience in the regular classroom (grades 1, 4, and 5), in Title 1 reading, as a tech specialists, and a literacy coach. She has a passion for literacy instruction and meeting the needs of the individual learner.