Reading Corner / Classroom Library : Jungle Theme Reading Corner

Reading Hut
Ashley Carpenter, Muscle Shoals, Alabama
Grade Level: 5th

My 5th grade classroom was designed around a jungle theme. My classroom library is centered around the Reading Hut. I built it with a lot of help from my dad. We cut the bamboo ourselves from some nearby woods, let it dry out for several weeks, and cut the sticks to equal lengths. The sticks touching the walls are bolted to the walls for stability. The remaining walls and roof were built by criss-crossing the bamboo sticks and tying them tightly together. The "Reading Hut" sign is an empty fabric bolt, and I cut out the letters on a machine. I bought vines, several jungle print pillows, tiki torches, baskets, and glued a little decorating moss to add the final touches. I also made the hanging monkeys out of fun foam. The shelves inside the hut are plastic gutters. We cut them down to the size I needed to fit inside the hut, and they are secured to the wall with concrete screws. I usually keep new books or popular books on these display shelves.

The palm tree was made by covering an empty carpet roll with brown paper sacks. The leaves were made from green bulletin board paper, and I glued a straightened wire coat hanger on the back so I could shape them.

Most of my books were purchased through book clubs. They are organized in bright-colored plastic storage containers which I bought at the dollar store. If a book is on Accelerated Reader, it has a color-coded sticker on the spine. The sheet posted on the wall beside Clifford lists the level for each color.

Each of my students has an assigned day for which he or she gets to visit the Reading Hut and read.

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