Hi Susan, empty bulletin boards are a challenge at the beginning of the year - but I'd rather put up quality work rather than something I rush the kids through. This summer, my students wrote to each other as "pen pals," and they are going to bring in their letters which I'll hang up as our first bulletin board. (Yes, that is sort of a short cut.) Something I've done in the past is have the students write and publish a piece of poetry during the first week of school. Judith Viorst's poem, "If I Were In Charge of the World" is an amazing mentor poem. I have my students write their own "If I were in charge ..." poems, and their poetry is usually quite amusing, as well as telling about their personalities. I hope this helps! All the best - Alycia
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