Drab to Fab: Teachers at NHS have the ability to decorate their rooms to their liking


Stephanie Gilbert’s room has a collage of pictures in the back from one side to the other

Caitlin Hall and Ravneet Kaur

From a prison-like classroom to a class full of colorful tapestry and warmth—students get their first impression of a teacher the moment they walk into the classroom. A bitmoji? The class will probably be interactive. An empty classroom with bright lights? Get ready for a year of boredom.

Noblesville High School allows teachers the freedom to decorate their classrooms the way they want to. Some teachers are known by students to have some of the most memorable classrooms at the school. 

“Students care about having a space that welcomes them and highlights what they are and care about. I want my classroom to be for students’ comfort and learning more than my own,” Beth Zilligen said, an English teacher at NHS. 

Zilligen’s room has fairy lights on the ceiling which add good lighting and an inviting feel that creates a calm environment for her students to focus. 

“I definitely feel like her room has made it easier for me to focus on reading and writing,”said a student of Zilligen, Jillian Cooke.

Unlike English, some students feel that history class can be overwhelming and full of memorization, which could make it an unappealing and uninteresting experience for some.

“History can be a dry subject and anything that can help make it more appealing is better for those trying to learn,” Swart said, a history teacher at NHS.

 Swart’s students agree with his assessment of his room. A distinctive feature of his room are the comfy couches and American flags hanging on the lights. 

“It provides a safe environment to escape from reality. The couches are very much fun to sit on and the stage makes for interesting presentations and lectures. Also let me mention the table soccer inside the coffee table. That is borderline genius main character behavior,” said a student of Swart, Kaelyn Hart.

For many students, appealing classrooms can make a difference in their learning.

[Well-decorated classrooms are] as important as getting a Core 40. If you’re not comfortable when you’re learning, then it’s not the class for you,” a student of English Bill Kenley, Arion Passmore.

 To Kenley, a classroom is a big factor in student learning. The main attraction of his room is the giant Buddha poster next to his desk which promotes a laid back atmosphere. 

 “The room is a big part of how people feel and makes a difference in how they respond to what happens in the room,” Kenley said.

 For many teachers, their classroom has a lot of thought out into it and is a way for them to express themselves.

“Lots of time went into decorating my classroom and I like to decorate for special events like Homecoming and College-Go Week,” Stephanie Gilbert said, a social science teacher.

Classes can be overwhelming, but according Gilbert, having a safe and comfortable space to work can certainly help students feel better. Her room is memorable due to the colorful collage displayed on her back wall.

“All students are different so I’m sure it means more to some students than others, we’re all unique!”