Let's Glow! A classroom transformation that your students will LOVE!

Thursday, April 27, 2017
(Amazon Affilate links are provided in this post for your convenience.)

Let's GLOW! After visiting RCA last October, myself and my teacher bestie committed to planning and completing an RCA inspired classroom transformation before the end of the year. Our first transformation took place last Wednesday, and OH MY GOSH, I am obsessed and 100% committed to doing several next school year! Keep reading and I PROMISE to tell you all about it! = )

Over the course of the last month we have been prepping for state testing like CRAZY. We have been  reviewing and re-covering and practicing, practicing, practicing. Both myself and my teacher bestie both tested on Thursday, so we thought Wednesday would be a fun day for some last minute testing review through a classroom transformation so... GLOW DAY 2017 was born!

I'd like to start by saying that all of our ideas were adapted from the AMAZING Hope King over at Elementary Shenanigans. We decided to use her "glow games" theme because when doing something new, why recreate the wheel when someone else has already
done something amazing?

We started by gathering the supplies that we needed. The hardest thing to find was most definitely black lights. We didn't want to spend money on black lights, so I reached out to anyone and everyone in search of some we could borrow. A local fire station who has a haunted house in October had some we were able to borrow! Whew! I suggest trying to find some before buying your own! If you can't find any, you can grab these off of Amazon.  Since we were able to get our backlights for free, we spend a total of about $40-50 a piece on our classroom transformation. SO cheap... music to my ears. Hah!

Okay, now for the details! Eek!
In order to get the kids intrigued and excited, I sent them each home with a ticket the night before our glow day. Other than what the ticket told them, the knew nothing. They were asking all sorts of questions but I kept it all a mystery!

You can grab these tickets as an editable freebie HERE on my TPT store. They are also included in the Glow Day Pack on my TPT store as well.

The next day when they entered our classroom, they had to provide their ticket. When they walked through the classroom door,
this is what they found...

The picture honestly doesn't do it justice. I LOVED hearing my kiddos reactions as they entered our transformed classroom. On the way in the door they grabbed some super cool glow stick glasses I purchased on Amazon and our day of amazingness began.

Alright, now for the stations...
We had 5 different stations and students stayed at
each station for 30-40 minutes.
It took our students the entire day to work through all 5 stations. 

Station 1: Ring Toss

(Supplies needed: the jugs, glow sticks, task cards)
At this station there were three different colored task cards. Each color card was a different skill. Students picked a card and answered the question independently. Once everyone answered independently and then agreed on an answer, each student got to throw a ring at the appropriately colored jug. Once everyone tossed, they moved on to the next task card.

Station 2: Geometry that GLOWS!

(Supplies needed: iPad with PicCollage, glowsticks, task cards)
This station was super simple, but the kiddos loved it. Students worked to create different shapes/angles/etc. using glow sticks and they took pictures of them and posted them into PicCollage on a graphic organizer. There were a few task cards sprinkled in on the graphic organizer so that students would have plenty to do.

Station 3: Let's Bowl!

(Supplies needed: water bottles, glow sticks, hamster ball, dice)
The station was one of the more elaborate ones. Students practiced creating numbers/fractions/decimals, ordering them, writing them in multiple forms, and rounding them. Students rolled the dice to create the numbers. Once they completed one "round" in their student booklet (more on that later) each student got one bowl. They recorded the number of pens that knocked down on a bowling sheet.

Station 4: Jenga

We wrapped each Jenga block with backlight reactive tape. We had five colors of tape and each color went with the same color task card. A student pulled a task card, everyone answered the question/discussed, and then the student who pulled the card got to pull a Jenga block. 

Like I said earlier, all students rotated through all 4 stations. Student each had a recording book where they organized and recorded their work all day long. I had a light up wand that I passed to different groups as I caught them working well together and staying on task. This motivated the students to work as a team because they wanted to hold the magical wand!

It was an AMAZING day. I have never seen my students so engaged and motivated as they were on this day. I am not gonna lie, I was a bit scared about doing a classroom transformation. Would my kids be CRAZY? Would they stay on task? I was CRAZY to even question them. I cannot wait to do more of these transformations next year!

So, now that I’ve told you all about our AMAZING day, have I convinced you to give it a try? If you are a 5th grade teacher, you can grab 90+ pages worth of resources and task cards that go with all four of these stations over on my TPTpage. Everything you need to complete the educational side of these centers is in this pack!

Grab the Pack HERE.

Have you done a transformation?
What was your theme? I'd love to hear all about it!

Grab all of the supplies you need off of Amazon Prime below!
(I split the glasses and glowsticks with a teammate in order to cut down on the cost.)

(Amazon Affilate links are provided in this post for your convenience.)


  1. YAYYY!! I loved everything you did and I can't WAIT to do something similar.

    Not gonna lie though, prob. next year.

    Anisa @ Creative Undertakings

    1. Haha! Next year is PERFECT! This is a crazy time of year! I'm trying to come up with something different to do this fall!

  2. In one word, AMAZING! Thank you so much for sharing, you have a real knack for making learning fun! -Suellen Henry

    1. You are the sweetest! Thanks for the kind words! I just adapted the ideas from Hope King @ Elementary Shenanigans! Can't wait for you to try it at your school!

  3. AWESOME!! It looks super fun! I'm sure your students had a blast!

  4. How fun!! I can tell it took a lot of time and effort to plan this amazing experience for your students! Thanks for sharing this learning opportunity with us!

  5. What a blast! My fifth graders will
    ❤️ this!

  6. SO cute! I may have to do this for K!

  7. This looks great! Quick question! My classroom looks about as big as yours...how many large black lights did you use to make your room look that amazing?!

  8. I have the same question! About how many black lights did you use?? Thanks!

    1. Yes wondering how many lights would be needed?

  9. I ended up using two. But they were really good quality! The cheaper lights don’t work that well. This is what I used: https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B01HCSEFEY/ref=mp_s_a_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1523120962&sr=8-4&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_QL65&keywords=black+lights&dpPl=1&dpID=41u-TbAzhzL&ref=plSrch

    Yo could probably even get away with one (they are that good) anyway, have fun!!!

  10. How many black lights did you have to use for your classroom?

  11. This looks amazing Ms. Smith! You must have an awesome principal. I would love to meet both of you.

  12. I'm trying this beginning of October with my first grader ... it will be my first transformation ever ... thank you so much for sharing !!

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  14. I was thinking of laminating the task cards. Would that mess with the UV light's reaction?