5 Favorite Classroom Themes, from Not So Wimpy Teacher

This post originally appeared on the blog Diary of a Not So Wimpy Teacher  

If you’ve followed my blog, then you know just how much I love having a classroom theme! In THIS post, I told you my top three reasons for having a theme and in THIS post, I shared four ways to save money while decorating with a theme. Now, as promised, I want to show you five of my favorite classroom themes and how to incorporate them into your classroom. It was hard to pick just five, but these are the ones that made the final cut! As you start looking toward the school year, I hope some of these ideas will make it easier to decorate your classroom.
Consider a sports theme for your classroom decorations

Sports Classroom Theme

I love having a sports theme classroom. And the big shocker? I don’t even like sports! The important thing is that almost every one of my students likes a sport in one way or another. They might play on a team, go to older siblings’ games or professional games, or watch the games with their dads on Sundays. If nothing else, they play the games in PE and at recess. I think this is an especially great year to plan a sports theme classroom because kids will probably be pumped up after watching the summer Olympics!
For this sports theme classroom, the Not So Wimpy Teacher decorated a bulletin board with green paper (for turf), a girl kicking a soccer ball into a goal, and titled the board "Reading is the Goal."
You can see lots more pictures of my sports theme classroom by clicking HERE.
The best part about having a sports theme classroom is that it lends itself so nicely to character trait education. Talking about sports helps my class to learn about teamwork, perseverance, hard work, being fair, being safe, and following rules. 
With a sports theme for your classroom decorations, it's easy to use team roles and metaphors to teach your students. Using this green board with baseball bat logos, Not So Wimpy Teacher uses team players' roles to explain roles and responsibilities in the classroom and in lessons.
I also love to use big sporting events as a theme for parties and test prep! During the World Series, we have a reading challenge where students are competing in teams to read the most. During the Super Bowl, I threw a Super Bowl party and invited their dads. I put fraction centers all around the classroom. Dads helped the kids complete the centers as a review and then we enjoyed all the popular Super Bowl foods! During Spring Training, we had baseball themed test prep activities and games! It’s fun and academic! 
The sports classroom theme also lends itself to an easy costume for the teacher. Here, Not So Wimpy Teacher is dressed as a referee for school!
I also recommend that you check out my Sports Classroom Theme Pinterest Board!
Sports theme, Hollywood theme, Beach theme, and more. Get great ideas for decorating your classroom and learn how to turn these themes into lessons!

Hollywood Classroom Theme

Imagine that you are walking down the red carpet in a dress that costs more than you make in a month. The paparazzi are clicking photos as fast as they can. Hear the crowd of adoring fans and imagine the looks of awe on their faces. Feel the glamour! Everyone wants to feel that important from time to time but few of us will ever be super famous. So why not roll out the red carpet and make your students feel like VIPs in your classroom? I love this theme because it feels so glamorous and special every time you walk in the room.
Hollywood themed sign that reads Welcome to Third Grade


You can use the same Hollywood theme to create card labels for rotating classroom roles and responsibilities
It would be so much fun to have a director’s chair and let students do author shares from the chair. Have a special open house where students dress up and show off their work to their adoring fans (their family). Read about famous actors and musicians and do a research report about California. Have students make their own videos to teach various skills that you are covering in math or science. Have a special screening of the videos with popcorn! End the year with an amazing Grammy awards ceremony where students receive small trophies for their special accomplishments. Don’t forget the red carpet and the camera! 
You can also use the same Hollywood classroom decoration idea to make cards for your class schedule
I also recommend that you check out my Hollywood Classroom Theme Pinterest Board!
Beach classroom theme

Beach Classroom Theme

The beach is my happy place. I love the smell of the salt water and sunblock. I love the relaxing sound of the ocean waves. I feel so peaceful when I am at the beach. A classroom with a beach theme can have that same magical feel and be a happy place for your students. 
Not So Wimpy Teacher incorporated beachy touches with labels for classroom supplies. Here, there are two buckets of materials with beach-themed labels: one with "markers" and a pair of sunglasses, and the other with "glue" and a pair of bright swim shorts
It would be so fun to have beach chairs in your classroom library. Reading on the beach is the best! How about doing research on the different oceans and making presentations to present to the class? Can you integrate this into your science unit by learning about different ocean animals and their adaptations? How about adding in a STEM project where students get various materials to use to build a boat and then the class tests them to see which one can hold the most pennies without sinking? Do you see all the ways that you can integrate this theme into geography, science and reading?! Don’t forget to end the year with a class luau!
Using the same beach theme, you can decorate your class jobs labels with beachy touches your students will recognize like these illustrations of a bucket of sand, and plastic sand shovels
I also recommend that you check out my Beach Classroom Theme Pinterest Board!
Travel classroom theme

Travel Classroom Theme

I have always wanted a travel themed classroom, but a great theme kit never existed. So I made one! Many of your students have happy memories of family vacations to see Grandma or go to Disney or to the ocean. Other students have never been on a true vacation. Either way, your classroom can be an adventure where students will learn and travel to places all over the world. How cool does that sound?!
Once you select a theme for your classroom decor, you can revisit the theme for all of your classroom labels and decorations, like this travel-themed Ship label for a bucket of class markers.
A travel theme is easily incorporated into your geography and history lessons. I love the idea of naming each table group after a continent or an ocean. I guarantee they will be able to name them all at the end of the year! How about having a huge map and putting push pins in the places where class read alouds and book club books take place? During your opinion writing unit, it would be fun to have them write an opinion piece about the best place to go on vacation. During your informational writing unit, they can research different places to travel and make brochures. You can bring in some math by having them make a budget for their trip! Fun and practical!
Continuing with the travel theme for class supplies, this jar of pencils has a label featuring a globe with "Europe" written across it


The class jobs labels for a travel theme look a lot like Google maps routes, which is a great metaphor for many class jobs like a Line Leader
I also recommend that you check out my Travel Classroom Theme Pinterest Board!
Camping Classroom Theme

Camping Classroom Theme

I am NOT a camper. I prefer “camping” in resorts rather than tents! That being said, I still have wonderful memories of camping with family when I was a child. Most kiddos have been camping before and so this is a theme that they can relate to.
Not So Wimpy Teacher incorporated a camping theme into her lesson plan binder with an illustration of a tent and a "camp" sign on the front.
I think that a camping classroom is extra easy to decorate! You just need to head out to the garage and dig through the old camping gear! Plus stores will have lots of sales on camping gear during the summer. I love the idea of a tent in the class library or at least a few camping chairs around a fire pit made of rocks and some wood. Please don’t light it, though! Kids might like to read with lanterns and flashlights — even when the classroom lights are on! At the end of writing units, you can have a special Camp Share-A-Story. Kids bring sleeping bags and flashlights. They lay on the floor listening to each others’ stories. For added effect, go to youtube and play a continuous video of a camp fire. The sound is so awesome and it provides some light. S’mores are a must in a camping room! 


Camp decorations are relatively simple to add to the classroom–here, Not So Wimpy Teacher made a classic wooden post for the storytelling area of the classroom
I also recommend that you check out my Camping Theme Classroom Theme Pinterest Board!
If none of these themes suit your fancy, maybe you can find another theme from my store!
Click here for Classroom Theme Kits

Want these theme kits? See how your school can buy them on your behalf.

Here are some more blog posts about classroom themes that might interest you!
3 Reasons I Love Having a Classroom Theme


4 Ways to Save Money on a Classroom Theme
Jamie, Not So Wimpy Teacher's signature


Headshot of Jamie, the Not So Wimpy Teacher. I am a full-time curriculum designer and educational blogger. I love creating resources that help teachers to save time while keeping students engaged and learning. I would love for you to visit my store and blog for more fun ideas and resources. You can also connect with me on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.