Back-to-School Ideas for The Art Room

Whether you’re entering your first year or your thirtieth, there’s always something new to learn. It’s what makes teaching so fun and exciting—there’s never a dull moment! Grab one of these ideas from our archives and resources to get yourself inspired for another amazing year.


If you are the only art teacher in your building, consider these articles your “BFF” whispering handy tips in your ear as you work through those first tough weeks.

First Day Activities

Because going over the rules is “so last year,” here are some fresh ideas to keep that first day memorable for your students and not-so-boring for you.

Building Relationships

Building relationships with students is critically important, but students aren’t the only people you will interact within this profession. Learn to “play nice” with all of the stakeholders in your building to start the year off on the right foot.


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Supplies and Materials

Managing all the stuff that comes along with this profession can be daunting. Here are some articles to help you hone in on what you really need.

Curriculum Planning

Scope and sequence, fitting in all those standards and making sure you don’t forget anything: Curriculum is a fun puzzle that is always a work in progress.

Classroom Management

It all starts with setting high expectations from the start and sticking to your guns!


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Time Management 

It seems like our prep time at school is less and less each year. Find ways to use the time you do have wisely. Consider it a game, it’ll be fun!


Preparing for Subs

There will come a time when you have to be out of the art room. Sub plans are a cinch with the following tips!

Reaching All Learners

New students bring rewarding new challenges. You must bring your A-Game to reach all learners in the art room!

Remember: You can’t do it all. Chip away at your goals and continue to add things each week and month that enhance your art room, solidify your curriculum and make the overall experience your students have memorable.

If you could give one piece of advice to a new art teacher for the first week of school, what would it be?

Magazine articles and podcasts are opinions of professional education contributors and do not necessarily represent the position of the Art of Education University (AOEU) or its academic offerings. Contributors use terms in the way they are most often talked about in the scope of their educational experiences.


Jessica Balsley

Jessica Balsley is AOEU’s Founder and a former AOEU Writer and elementary art educator. She is passionate about helping art teachers enhance their lives and careers through relevant professional development.

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