Friday, November 2, 2012

Gettin' Thankful With It (Kids Table Setting Part II)

If you read our previous table setting post, you learned the basics of of getting our Thanksgiving table look. This table setting is exactly the same except it includes a thankful collage board.  

After finding the "there is always always always..." quote, I was inspired to make the design below.
 I printed out things that I'm thankful for, cut the words out, and used my colorful tape from Target to attach them to the board.

The thankful collage board idea could be incorporated in a classroom or the home by having the kids write/type what they are thankful for and attactching it to the board. 

Thanks for stopping by! 

photography/styling/post by Ashlee McClung, Editor of 

Fun & Simple Thanksgiving Table for Kids (Part I)

Make the kids table a fun place to be! Here's how we set up a cheap and easy kids Thanksgiving table... 

Place a table cloth (we used a sheet), lay down some butcher paper (from Dollar Tree), and use colorful tape (from Target) to make rectangles for where each plate will go to get the basic look of this table setting. 

Cut small pieces of the colorful tape to make paths for paper ships. The paper ships also make for great place cards.

Graph paper was used to make the paper ships. The flags on the ships are made from toothpicks and the colorful tape from Target. 

Brown leaves (Dollar Tree) and plastic yellow silverware (Hobby Lobby) were placed on top of a folded piece of graph paper (incase the kiddies want to make more ships). Mason jars and straws are used for drinks. 

We used tissue paper to make some colorful tassel garland and attached it to the table cloth.

Our trusty chalkboard painted globe was used to show the path of the Mayflower. Colored pencils and crayons were also set out for drawing on the butcher paper. 

Have you ever set up a kids table for a get together? What worked or didn't work? 

Would love your feedback! 

Thanks for reading! See Part II of this post by clicking here.  

photography/styling/post by Ashlee McClung, Editor of

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

FREE Teacher Desktop Background

Can you believe it's the beginning of another school year?! Where does the time go? 

Teachers spend a lot of time planning and working on their computers these days. Instead of having the regular "joe schmo" desktop background, I thought it would be fun to create a desktop background for teachers to display on their computer screens this year.

I wanted to make a modern background with a nice inspirational quote. I figured I couldn't go wrong with a chevron pattern and Einstein quote! Right? lol  I designed the chevron pattern on photoshop, added the orange graphic (found on, and then added the quote.

Here's what I came up with:

Close up of the quote below!

The background is available in 5 different sizes. Click on the size you need below. Once you see the image of the background appear in a new window, right click on the image and set it as your background.

To find the size of your screen:

Go to Properties then Settings for PC.

Go to System Preferences then Desktop & Screensaver for Mac.

Here's a picture of the background on my computer! :) I'm working on some more desktop images and will share them soon! 

Hope you enjoy your new desktop background!

Happy Teaching!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

15 Bulletin Board Borders to Try This Year

Bored with traditional commercial borders? No worries! We've got 15 bulletin board border ideas that will get your creative juices flowing!

Laura, from Peace, Love & First Grade shows us how to make this easy scrunchy bulletin board border from butcher paper.  We love the way this looks! Thanks for sharing Laura! Click here for instructions.

Kendra from My Insanity makes this fun and colorful crepe garland that would be perfect for bulletin board border. Click here to start making your colorful scrunchy boarder! 

Brittany made this bulletin board border that we found on Polka Dot Barn. Made the same as the previous border just in black colored crepe paper.   Love the scrapbook pages as the background too!

Christmas tensile doesn't just have to be used for Christmas time.  Buy some in non-traditional Christmas colors to use at different times throughout the year. We bet you could get a great deal on tensile at after Christmas sales!

We found this holly border and love it. Makes a huge statement and we really like the extra touch the lights give this border! So festive!

Jordan from Oh Happy Day shows us how to make these adorable flower lights made from cupcake wrappers! Click here to get the directions. These lights would make an awesome border for a spring time bulletin board. 

Howdy Ya'll! Oriental Trading makes good use of handkerchiefs as bulletin board border for the country-western bulletin board. Click here to read more. 

The author of Littlest Learners writes about how she uses non-commercial border to make her bulletin boards have a 3D feel. Click here to see more of her ideas!

Ashley from Teaching Happily Ever After shares some of her favorite bulletin board ideas here. We love the way she used the red tulle fabric with lights. I would love to see an entire bulletin board wrapped with tulle and lights! 

This bulletin board border is made from tissue paper. The idea comes from Stephane found at Classroom DIY. Simple, easy, and affordable! Yes, yes, and yes!

The Virtual Vine used Hawaiian leis to make the border for their Chicka Chick Boom Boom bulletin board. Great idea! Click here to read more!

Cool idea for a rainbow fish bulletin board! The braided fabric border looks great! 
 Click here for a whole bunch of rainbow fish ideas from The Kissed Frog

Rebecca from better life bags explains how to make the above ribbon garland and below frayed garland  here. Thanks for sharing your great ideas Rebecca! 

Erica from p.s. I made this shows how to make the trendy garland draped across the fireplace. Click here to see the tutorial. You could use your school's colors to make this ribbon garland as a bulletin board border to show school spirit! 

Wew! So many good bulletin board border ideas and so little time! Have you used any of the border ideas above? Any border ideas we missed? Let us know!

Have a creative day!

Monday, August 6, 2012

6 Creative Seating Ideas for the Classroom

Need some extra seating in your classroom or just tired of your traditional classroom chairs? 

Have a look at these 
6 creative alternatives to regular classroom chairs to get inspired.  

 If your students aren't thrilled with a certain center or don't pick independent reading as frequently as you would like, incorporate a fun seating option! Adding fun seating options can really motivate students to want to spend time in a certain area in the classroom. 

1. Wrap inner tubes with fabric for a unique place to sit. We envision these summer time pool favorites being used somewhere like the library or listening center.

2. Turn crates into seating! There's a bonus to this seating too, extra storage! Great place to keep extra supplies like whiteboards and markers. Cut wood to fit the top opening of the crates, add some cushion and top with fabric of your choice. See how they were made here.  

3. A similar option to our #2 seating idea is the cute polka dotted bucket stools pictured above. The 3rd grade teacher who made the above stools bought 5 gallon paint buckets with lids. You can read more on how they were made by following this link. 

4. Kimberley from Bugaboo, Mini, Mr. & Me took a thrift store shelf and gave it new life as a padded bench. I think this would be excellent seating for a classroom library. You could keep themed books organized in the shelving section below.  

5. Ottomans make great seating for students. I used the same kind as ottomans pictured above in my classroom.  I loved the color they gave to my classroom, my students loved sitting on them, and they were great for storage. 

6.  I will admit I would be nervous to try yoga balls as seating in my classroom. You would definitely have to have a group of students that could handle this option. The teacher seems to have everything under control in this classroom. Cool idea! 

Do you know of any other creative seating options for the classroom? I would love to learn of more ideas!
Thanks for reading! 

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Getting to Know izzyshare

We've had several people ask us questions about izzyshare and thought we would answer the most common ones for everyone.  Let's begin!

1. What exactly is izzyshare? 

izzyshare is a website- - a place for teachers to upload pictures of their classroom design/decorating ideas (bulletin boards, decorated doors, center ideas, etc.).  We have hundreds of pictures, so just think of it as a large library of  categorized classroom pictures to look through to find ideas and inspiration for your own classroom.

Teachers inspiring other teachers to provide fun, stylish, and functional classrooms for their students.

We also have a blog and facebook page to keep izzyshare friends updated on great classroom design ideas.

2. Where does the name izzyshare come from?

We have a sweet little cousin named Issabelle and one of her nicknames is 'Izzy' and we think it's super cute. We also thought 'izzy' could maybe be word play for 'easy' and the share part is just what it is- awesome teachers sharing their great ideas.

3. How did izzyshare come about?

After being inspired by shows like Trading Spaces and HGTV at the age of 16, Ashlee was ripping out the carpet in her bedroom to reveal the oak hardwood flooring, painting the walls a creamy butter yellow, saving money to buy a bed in a bag from Wal-Mart, and sewing curtains to add softness to her little abode. Ever since then, interior design has been on her mind!

Ashlee's first classroom in 2008.

Inevitably, her love for interior design spread into her classroom. While planning her classroom designs she would spend much of her time searching on the net for classroom ideas that mostly led to sites with pure text or links that had her all over the internet. She wanted one place that was full of pictures. That’s when the idea for izzyshare began to form.

Ashlee's first classroom in 2008.

4. Who's behind izzyshare? 

Mark and Ashlee work together on izzyshare everyday.  They are both from Beckley, West Virginia and met in high school. 


Both graduated from Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia. Mark has a BA in Marketing and Ashlee has a BA in Elementary Education.  They currently live in the Dallas, Texas area with their two miniature schnauzers Lexi and Cobi. 


5. Why do you work on izzyshare?

We both have the same feelings about classroom environments. Students spend so much time in classrooms why not make it the best possible environment? Our students are our future; lets provide motivational spaces that foster creativity and inspiration. 

Anything we missed? Have more questions? Contact us at

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Over in the Jungle Inspired Bulletin Board

I knew I wanted to do a jungle bulletin board but wasn't quite sure what direction I wanted to go in. Then I saw the book Over in the Jungle and instantly fell in love with the illustrations!
  Hats off to Jeanette Canyon, she did an amazing job! 

Since Over in the Jungle is a rhyming book, I thought it would be a good idea to make the bulletin board about rhyming so it could become a learning resource for students. You could switch out the words and rhyming family as needed. 

Looking at the pages of the book, there is a textured quality to them that I wanted to portray on my bulletin board. 

To get a textured look I crumbled up the materials I used for the sun (tablecloth from the Dollar Tree) and the blue background (blue paper from Hobby Lobby).

I used a decorative mirror to trace a circle onto my tablecloth. I doubled up the tablecloth by folding it in half to make sure the yellow showed up better, since the material is on the transparent side.

Next I cut the sun out. I've tried using regular scissors before but pinking sheers, like the pair of scissor shown below, work much better on the tablecloth.

Crumbled up my blue paper for my background. Nice stress reliever! 

Stapled the blue paper to the bulletin board.

Stapled my sun to the middle of the bulletin board. Didn't realize it at the time, but Mark pointed out that it looked like a country's flag. So I googled it and I made the flag of Palau (island country in the Pacific Ocean).   ;)

 Next, I cut out a tree limb shape out of brown craft paper that I found at the Dollar Tree, cut it out, and stapled the limb to the board. Then I added the pretty jungle flower border that I got from K-12 School Supplies

Picked up some fake leaves while I was at the Dollar Tree.

Cut the leaves off with a pair of regular scissors. 

I found stuffed animal monkeys at the Dollar Tree, but when I got home I noticed they looked a little sad. :(  So in an attempt to make them happy monkeys, I did some work with a sharpie! 


Woohoo! Now the bulletin board started coming together!

 I also got the long vines that the monkeys are holding onto from the Dollar Tree!

I used green ribbon and my leaves to put my rhyming words on..

I used velcro to attach the words to the leaves. 

I wasn't in love with the leaves at the end of the tree limb so I decided to draw out and paint my own. 

I went over the lighter shade of green with a darker green, to give the leaves a more realistic look.

  Below is a picture of the orange vine flower things (nice technical term 'vine flower things') that I drew out and painted orange. After they were dry I used yellow chalk on the flower part for some added detail. I really feel like the orange added a nice pop of color to the bulletin board.

All finished! 

I pulled out my rug from when I taught kindergarten to add some more jungle flair to the picture.

I love this bulletin board! So fun for the classroom! Hope it inspires you!