Getting Crafty After Testing!

It's "testing season" in Florida where I teach and while it's tempting to allow students to "take a break" after testing, we all know the saying about idle hands!

So what I have done is channel my inner crafty lady and am happy to share the ideas that have helped to keep my students engaged!

After state testing is done for the day, my middle school students need a break!  These ideas give them that break and still keep them learning! #teaching #ideas

Thee #1 thing that my students are into right now is PAINTING!
We were doing some test prep review using a menu designed for the picture book Miss Rumphius and asked the students to draw the main idea.  One boy asked "Could we paint?" and I said "Sure!"  The next thing you know, everyone was totally engrossed, calm and quiet!   Then I added in some classical music and it was bliss!   I so wish an administrator had walked in then!

After state testing is done for the day, keep your middle school students engaged with educational arts and crafts!  #teaching #ideas

Wanting to capitalize on this "artsy mood" we were in, I thought we could add in some writing.  So I gathered some of those paint cards from Walmart, and we wrote some poems about color.  

My middle school students loved writing paint chip poetry as an after testing activity!  #teaching #ideas

We also made some collages and cut out pictures from magazines to depict the 5 main text structures for nonfiction review.

Here's a creative way to review text structures in middle school!  #teaching #languagearts

Too many times, our students do not have the opportunity in Middle School to participate in art classes.  It's truly a shame when you consider this:

" A 2012 study published by the National Endowment of the Arts linked arts education in low socio-economic communities to greater academic achievement, higher career goals, and more civic engagement." - from 

Not only that, but art is soothing and a way to allow students to express themselves along with their learning in a more "out of the box" way.  That's why I've begun collecting ideas that you can see below.

Follow Mrs. Spangler in the Middle's board Arts and Crafts for Middle School on Pinterest.

Thanks for stopping by!  


  1. Painting is a great activity. I posted an art activity this time, not involving paint, but I bet your guys would like these water flowers. See you around. Kathleen Kidpeople Classroom

  2. I think it's wonderful that the kids initiated the painting idea! They know what they need!

  3. You are so right about art! Unfortunately, in my district, kids don't get art in 4th or 5th grade. It's really a shame. I love all your artistic ideas! The paint chip poems are such a great way to use those! Thanks for linking up!

    Forever in Fifth Grade

  4. I used to do Color Poetry when I taught ELA in fourth grade. I know teach fifth grade math and science. Miss Rumphius does make the world a better place!

  5. Your paint chip idea is great. It gets those kids that have a hard time imagining things something to hold on to. I also use paint chips for all sorts of things in my class. I do a lot of art projects in my Social Studies and Religion classes.
    Thanks for sharing.


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