Wahoo!  Astrobrights Papers’ Colorize Your Classroom Challenge is back!!  Do you remember the amazing projects shared on ColorizeYourClassroom.com last year? ColorizeYourClassroom.com gives teachers a go-to source for inspiration and ideas on  how color can help transform their classrooms.  And how my good friend, Reagan, and her school won a $5,000 yearlong sponsorship from Astrobrights?

Colorize Your Classroom

Well, lucky for teachers, it’s back!  I mean, who wouldn’t want to win this generous package for their school?  Studies show that color can increase memory by up to 50 percent and help students remain engaged.  Let me repeat: 50%!  WOW!  I love color but to actually increase memory, YES, I need A LOT of color.  How about you?  More importantly, how about your kids?  Makes me want to just put color blocks everywhere.

The Astro Bright Minds have issued four different challenges that tackle problems teachers face when creating the right environment for their students: classroom decor, organization, differentiated instruction, and memorization.

Today, I’m tackling classroom decor with a little classroom DIY project. As I’ve told you before, I really love POPS of very very bright colors.  So, how can we incorporate color into classrooms?   SO many ways.  I’m sharing a fun way to incorporate color into your classroom decor but wait….there is learning involved too!  I believe almost every single item in your room is there for a purpose: either learning, inspiration, function, or all of the above.

Now, I’ve always had a small lamp on my teacher table or in the classroom library.  No need for it to be boring! Let’s colorize it!

Colorize Your Classroom Astrobrights and A Modern Teacher


Here’s how to create a Unity Lampshade that brings the entire class together:

First of all, explain how this year we come together to learn what we need to be ready for ____ (the next grade level). Explain to them how we each have our own strengths and talent and how we have to use those strengths to light up the future.  We all have bright minds. When we come together, and use those bright minds, great things happen.

Have each student write their name on a piece of paper with one word that describes them.  Share these words with each other.

Tell the students that we are going to make a class Unity Lampshade.  The lampshade will sit on the table always reminding us that we are bright, we have strengths, and we work together.  Plus, wouldn’t it be fun to save these year after year?  Before you know it you’ll have a few shades you can string together in a garland and keep them as memories….displaying all of the names of kiddos you have touched.

Depending on your grade level, the next steps will look a little different.  If you are teaching a younger grade, you will probably do the entire project yourself.  If you do this with 2nd/3rd/4th graders, you can probably do some together and finish it up yourself.  For upper grades, you can do the entire thing together having kids finish it up.

Colorize Your Classroom DIY Lampshade with Astrobrights and A Modern Teacher


various colors of Astrobrights Papers

Mod Podge


plain lamp shade (I bought mine at Hobby Lobby for $6 or even one from a thrift store will work since you are covering it)

Sharpie marker

Step 1: Cut several squares of paper; the size of your class and the size of the lampshade will determine how many squares you need.

Step 2: Have kids write their names on a square and one word to describe themselves. Use a sharpie marker.  If you use a regular crayola marker, the letters will bleed after you add the glue.

Step 3: Add the squares to the lampshade.  The lampshade I bought already had adhesive.  Pretty cool~right?!  Slowly add the squares adding a turn here and there to make it a collage effect.  If your shade does not have adhesive, use an adhesive spray.

Step 4: Add a phrase or title to the lampshade if you’d like.  For example, you could write “Unity” or “Lighting Up the Future”, “We are so bright!”, “Bright Minds“, or  whatever fits your group.

Step 5: After putting something underneath the lampshade (it can drip), slowly brush Mod Podge over the squares.  For those who don’t know what mod podge is…it is a glue that seals and finishes.  It dries clear and really prevents the squares from unraveling.

That’s it!  You can add color, washi tape, or embellishments to the rim of the lampshade and you’re done!


Colorize your classroom Astrobrights and A Modern Teacher

Then as you are creating more unity among your students, you always have this to refer to.  Plus, it adds COLOR to your room (increasing that memory-yay!).

Now, it’s your turn.  Think you have a bright idea? Check out the challenges on ColorizeYourClassroom.com, upload an image of your own solution using color paper and enter to win a yearlong sponsorship from Astrobrights worth $5,000.

Submit yours and Astrobrights may feature it as the pick of the week on Facebook to help other teachers colorize their learning.

Enter up to four times, once for each challenge.

Visit ColorizeYourClassroom.com for details, official rules for entry and hundreds of ideas on how to Colorize Your Classroom.

Good luck this school year! ~April

Colorize Your Classroom

This is a sponsored post.  All opinions are my own.  I strive to bring only the best to teachers and parents.