A simple bulletin board you create once and display all year long.
By Sara Jonckheere
Decorating bulletin boards – a classroom necessity but not always a favorite activity for some teachers. With this Growing with God bulletin board idea, you have a bulletin board (or door decoration) that can be used year-round to display student growth. It is simple to create and students can help with the creating and decorating once you hang up the title.
White chart or bulletin board paper
“Growing with God” letters (download free)
Print out the letters that spell “Growing with God” on the colored paper of your choice. Cut out each letter and hang on the bulletin board.
PRO TIP: The letters are designed to print one per page, but you can print them smaller by using the print multiple feature in the printer settings and having more than one letter printed per page. I printed four to a page to decorate a standard-sized door.
Hang up the brown paper to make the trunk of the tree. Use the large white paper and draw the outline of the top of the tree. Have students use green washable paint (add dish soap to make it even more washable) to make handprints inside the tree outline. Their handprints will make the leaves of the tree.
Once the paint has dried, cut out the top of the tree and put it on the bulletin board above the trunk. Now you have the basics for the bulletin board.
To Make the Bulletin Board Seasonal
If you want to keep this bulletin board/door décor up all year, you can make some simple changes to the tree to make it work for each season. The basic set up would be the summer bulletin board.
For fall, add apples to the tree using red tissue paper or construction paper. You can decorate around the tree with falling apples, piles of leaves, or pumpkins.
For winter, cover the treetop with white paper to represent snow. Have students make their own snowflakes to hang around the tree.
For spring, remove the white paper and add flowers to the green tree. Use tissue paper or construction paper to make the flower buds on the trees. Have students create flowers to put along the ground underneath the tree.
What Else Can You Add to This Board?
Decide how you want to use the bulletin board throughout the year. Do you want to display work? Do you want to share student learning about a certain topic? Keep track of growth in a certain subject area? Do you want to highlight topics covered in religion class that demonstrate the students’ growth in their faith journey? There are so many possibilities that you could use that would fit with the theme of Growing with God.
Ideas for faith-based work to display:
- Student reflection sheets completed at multiple times during the year to show their growth and understanding of the Catholic faith or relationship with Jesus
- Prayers written by the students
- Reports or activities about the saints
- Goals for the year
- Pictures of class service projects
- Written reflections on living out the Ten Commandments, Beatitudes or Works of Mercy
If you are using this as a door display, you will obviously be more limited as to what else you can add around the tree. For the door, you might want to simply add the names of your students as a way to welcome them to your classroom and create a sense of community. You could even change this out throughout the year – write their names on apples, write their names on snowflakes, write their names on flowers, and so on.
Sara Jonckheere is an elementary school teacher turned stay-at-home mom. She now creates digital curriculum and resources and shares teaching ideas on her blog, Sara J Creations.
Image credit: All images copyright © Sara Jonckheere for Today’s Catholic Teacher. All rights reserved.
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