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Designing a Classroom Assignment

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How space is filled has a great deal to do with whether or not a class meets the needs of the children it serves. Well-planned attractive arrangements invite exploration and minimize staff work. When the related interest areas are grouped with a thought to traffic patterns and the relationship of noisy and quiet activities, they virtually draw children to them. Arranging and rearranging removable furnishings such as shelves, bins, and tables so as to create centers for house play, block building, puzzles, art projects, science, and literacy, contribute to a natural flow of activity. Flexible organization of this kind stimulates free choice and varied interests. 

The way a room is arranged determines in part the kind and amount of supervision required. If all or most children can be seen from one or two vantage points less patrolling and checkup is needed. This in turn means that teachers have more time for constructive individual attention. Less supervision is needed when the toilet areas are located where they can be directly entered by indoor and outdoor play areas. 

Spacious rooms filled with light, color, warmth, and order, appeal to children as well as adults. They make them feel comfortable and welcomed.

Two factors which influence the emotional climate of a classroom are light and noise. Natural light coming through the doors and windows without glare, yet adequate to lighten the furthest corner of a room, makes for a cheerful atmosphere. All the noises that accompany active children can often be muted so as to keep from setting nerves on edge. For example, a nearly square room is a better noise absorber than a long narrow one. Carpet helps minimize noise and should be included in areas such as the library, dramatic play, and block center. Floors (especially in the art, cooking, and science centers) should have a surface that is easy to clean. 

Independence is encouraged when storage areas are within reach of children, are clearly labeled, and they are free to use them. Cubbies for personal belongings, special shelves for puzzles, books, and manipulatives can help cut down work time and encourage use of equipment. 

General Rules

Below are a few general rules that will help you establish a room that is functional, allows for freedom of movement, gives responsibility to children in caring for their own room, and provides you with concrete suggestions on where to put what. 

  1. Place materials and equipment used most often close together to encourage constructive activity. For example, place the block and dramatic play areas next to each other. 
  2. Group quiet activities (library, science, math/ manipulatives) together and away from nosier activities (dramatic play, blocks, and woodworking.)
  3. Place quiet activities away from avenues of traffic (front door, restroom door.)
  4. Arrange equipment and centers so children may easily move from one learning center to another to lessen possibilities of misbehavior and provide opportunities for an easy transition. Traffic patterns should not go through centers; each center should have a clear entrance/ exit.
  5. Place activities that need water (art, science, and cooking) near a sink.
  6. Don’t forget the restroom. For children under age 6 years of age licensing does not require separate restrooms for boys and girls. 
  7. Have a quiet nook or cranny for a child to be alone for a while. This may be in your library, or separate spot, depending on space. 
  8. Establish basic centers (library/ literacy, art, science, math/ manipulatives, home living/ dramatic play, blocks, and music.) Add or subtract supplementary ones as the needs occur and common sense dictates. Don’t forget a space for large group or circle time activities. This may be a separate area or may be in your block or library areas if they are large enough.
  9. Provide individual cubbies or some sort of storage space for each child’s personal belongings.

Design a Classroom Assignment

When designing your assignment, I want you to design your concept of a developmentally appropriate classroom and money is no object.  I want you to have fun while completing this two-part classroom design assignment. 

For the first part of the assignment, you will draw a classroom floorplan and and in the second part of the assignment you will type a materials list for each area in your classroom design.  The Design a Classroom Assignment is worth 50 points.

Part 1: Floorplan Drawing 

  • The floor plan drawing must be at least 12 X 18 inches in size.
  • Use ink or marker.
  • Include your name.
  • Make sure it is very neat with all straight lines (use rulers, template, etc. if drawing it by hand.) Please include the walls of the room, doors, windows and bathrooms in your drawing.
  • All writing should be neat and in the same direction (not upside or sideways.) I should not have to rotate your drawing to be able to read any labels.
  • Although, you may make the initial drawing in pencil, please be sure to go over it with a pen so that it can be clearly seen. All writing should be in pen.
  • Learning centers must be clearly marked with dividers and storage cubbies or shelves, plus an area for large group activities. I want to be able to see the boundaries for each center, where it begins and ends, as well as where the entrance and exit will be. Make sure to include all required centers (library, literacy/writing center, art, science, math/cognitive, manipulatives, dramatic play/ home living, blocks, and music.)
  • Please include all furniture that would be in each area (tables, chairs, easels, sofas, dramatic play equipment.) Label cubbies with general types of materials that will be stored in each (e.g. art supplies, blocks, block props, kitchen supplies, costumes, etc.)


You may draw it virtually on the computer and follow all above bullet points.

Part 2: Typed Materials list

  • Materials list must be typed.
  • Include your name.
  • Please make sure to include a list of toys, games, materials, supplies (such as art supplies) and smaller equipment that would be found in each area of the classroom.

For example, in the library the area that the children may sit on or lay on while reading. 

  • Format your list by center or classroom area. One way to do this would be by typing the center or classroom area name such as the library, and then list the materials, supplies, and smaller equipment that you would put in your library area.
  • You may want to consult some early childhood toy and material company websites for ideas. A couple of possibilities are

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