Don't get locked in to only one room arrangement or having students sit only in one spot. It is important that everyone is able to work in multiple settings and show flexibility. I used name tents to indicate where students should sit depending on the class. Although I only put the nonreader's pictures on their tents, I think that it is a good idea to put everyone's picture on. That gives additional practice in pairing names with students.
We also had two recreational games - a soccer game and a foosball table. These were great for encouraging activities with peers, gross and fine motor skills and as a choice when choosing rewards. We had these donated.
After a summer of teaching science camp I discovered the u-shape was the most effecient to be able to get to deliver materials and prompt students.
Although I started the next year without the U I quickly discovered that I needed it.
I oriented it against the other wall as this left a clear spot to line up against the blue bulletin board and made it easy to point out the schedule.
The daily schedule is on the black board attached with velcro. The Boardmaker pics are large.
The stove and dishwasher are gone. The foosball table is stored by the window and brought out at break.
The fridge is gone. Our students now packed lunches that did not require refrigeration - just like other students. This year we got a soccer game.
The storage shelves make all our materials visible and easy to access. It is important to make sure that you label where things go and insist they go back to the same spot.
I learned how to design individual intensive teaching programs. We were given access to two additional classrooms. Eventually this space held 4 stations which students and SEAs rotated through for about 30 minutes of one on one programs. Materials were stored on counters in the room.
Our committment to using computer assisted instruction led to a separate computer room. As some programs could not function on the school servers we kept our old computers as well.
We also used this room for small group instruction for academic subjects.