Take a look at your Classroom after you have set out all the desks, library area, mats and all the other essentials that you need.
Firstly look at the walls – do you have display boards….where are they and how big are they??
The answers can vary from NO I do not have any display boards and no wall space. ( I have seen this in a classroom converted from another area. One side of the classroom was all windows and the other side had 2 doors and a pillar. The rear of the class had more windows and the front had the teaching screen !) The other extreme is to have walls covered with boards – + you might be allocated corridor boards and even boards in the hall…. again yes I have seen this !
Take a look at the sizes – obviously small, medium and large and again look at their positioning.
Now have a think about what sort of board each will be –
The general breakdown and choice goes like this
- Maths board / literacy board either individual boards or split a huge board
- Art / design tech board
- Topic focus
As an aside – I also like to have a small board near to the teachers desk on which I put class lists, club members and general reminders for me as a teacher (monitor list would go on here). Saves looking things up and a glance across at this board answers your question. If there is no board near your desk either pinch one from somewhere else or ask the caretaker if he/ she can find you something and put it up for you on the wall.
Lets assume that you only have class boards to worry about ….I am not going to go into the mechanics and content of display in this article – so please refer to following articles to help you with this.
The format and lifespan of boards is different for each subject – but you should aim to change every board at least once in a term. This frequency will depend on the topics covered in subject areas – and yes I know its a lot of work but bite the bullet and get them changed. If you have a Teaching Assistant then they can be a great help on this. Don’t try to do all at once rather spread it out over the term. Its for you to make the Professional decision when and what.
So lets consider the types of board we can set up….
- Straight display and colourful – done by you / T.A to encourage and spark interest in a topic. It can be pictoral or have information or a mix….can be used for a board filler if you’re really swamped by boards in your class
- Core subject displays….usually have information to remind, inform with regard to either basic areas of the curriculum or reinforcement on areas currently being covered – or a mix of both! There may be included examples of children’s work, more usually in literacy, but could be also in practical maths.
- Art / Design board – Under a bright and possibly amusing title I would expect to find children’s work displayed – you may have included some writing as explanation for the reader. Usually art work related to the topic or focus for the class at that time. Work big and all children’s work should be included.
- Topic board – here we find a mix of informative display from the teacher and work by the children – the two should usually relate. For example information on plant parts may be supplemented by detailed drawing from the children. Again keep up with the pace of the topic with this one.
For your own records you may like to take quick photos of your boards….we’re back to accountability but it also helps further along when you may have forgotten just how good these were and can use the same tips and techniques again!
It goes without saying that displays are only limited by 2 things….your imagination and your ability….oh ok lets throw in a third…time. Now I am not particularly artistic but It didn’t stop me from getting the displays up and them looking good. They are an integral and exciting part of your classroom environment and should be valued as such. The children will love to see their work displayed and you can bet Parents on parents evening will be proudly taken straight to see their childs’ work on the wall.
Ideas are plentiful…here’s a few I have picked out to start you off
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