I love to fill our classroom with inspiring things that motivate the kids. But sometimes what I think will inspire them-for all the cutesy signs and printables-mean little to the kids. Enter the Graffiti Wall. I grabbed some light-colored contact paper from Smiths, covered the closet door and hung some fun-colored permanent markers next to it. Whenever the kids finish their work early, have an indoor recess, etc., they can head back to the Graffiti Wall and draw or write something on it that inspires them. Sometimes as a class we'll add things to it. For example, when we were reading a book about Harriet Tubman, a kid mentioned that she inspired him and made him want to help other people. I handed him a marker and sent him to draw Harriet Tubman on our wall. A few days later, someone made a deep connection to a Martin Luther King, Jr. quote and added that quote to our wall. By the end of the year, it had become a very personal timeline of the year and when the kids were struggling with a hard day or difficult concept, they could head back to the Grafftii Wall to get remotivated. This year I'd like to get some showerboard, mount it to the back of a bookshelf and make it into a whiteboard Graffiti Wall.