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Hi :o

 

I was wondering what other people have on their display boards at the start of a new term. I've got six boards in my new classroom, and I don't want them to be bare when the children come in. At the same time, I'm not sure what to put up as the children obviously haven't produced anything to display yet.

 

I was thinking of having a welcome display with photos of the staff, and eventually photos of the children. I might also have a display about the EYFS and eventually add annotated photos of the children in the classroom. Other than that, should I stick with some generic literacy/numeracy/topic-based displays for the time-being?

 

Thanks!

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why does having them blank bother you? I always start with blank walls and invite the children to help me fill them up. I have staff photos and EYFS things up in the entrance area, and put photos of the children up as we go along, generally completed by the end of the second week once children have chosen which one they want up.

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why does having them blank bother you? I always start with blank walls and invite the children to help me fill them up.

 

It doesn't bother me, I just assumed SMT would want the boards to have something on them... I'd much rather do what you suggest and get the children to help fill them up :o

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It doesn't bother me, I just assumed SMT would want the boards to have something on them...

Maybe its about how you approach things with the SMT, Browneyedgirl? We in pre-school are lucky that we don't have too many people breathing down our necks with expectations of what our rooms should look like. I imagine in a school environment it is very different.

 

Perhaps you could compromise and prepare a display that is waiting for children's pictures to go on - one of the things I'd like to do is provide each child with a permanent space to display their work. They would have their own bit of the board and they would be responsible for deciding what to display there. You could mark out the space available, label it all up ready and then get the children to fill it up as and when they feel comfortable.

 

Maz

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Perhaps you could compromise and prepare a display that is waiting for children's pictures to go on - one of the things I'd like to do is provide each child with a permanent space to display their work. They would have their own bit of the board and they would be responsible for deciding what to display there. You could mark out the space available, label it all up ready and then get the children to fill it up as and when they feel comfortable.

 

Maz

 

This is an idea which I like Maz, but have a concern for those children who do not produce much - their space may well be empty - or have the same piece up for quite a long time - then there may be parent envy. We put children's work up for a session or two on the cupboard doors - it is for the children to know that their work is there, but we don't in a sense display it for all to see - if you catch my drift.

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It doesn't bother me, I just assumed SMT would want the boards to have something on them... I'd much rather do what you suggest and get the children to help fill them up :o

 

 

Ah, I see what you mean. Perhaps just back them with some nice paper and a border and then it looks inviting? In the past I have sent each child a postcard from my holidays and asked them to draw or paint me a picture - which they generally bring to show me on the first day back.

 

I didn't send postcards this year as I'd not have had time for anything else! Last year I sent 42 and this year would have been 50 odd! So I decided to just have a holiday instead!

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This is my concern as well. We have ofsted over due so I am really concerned about not having anything up except a nursery rhyme display and folders waiting for the childrens photos to go on. Last year with settling the children in and everything it was nearly half time before all the displays were decorated.

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Yes, I have those concerns too, Panders but a friend does this in a big classroom and it works really well. Children who don't 'produce' much are encouraged to use their space to display whatever they want - so some might bring in a birthday card they've received, or a photograph or their favourite comic, or whatever they want to put up there.

 

It has to be carefully explained to the parents, in order to manage their expectations, too!

 

Maz

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Love your idea of the child's own designated space Maz can i just enquire how do you do this, wall, screen ? and for how many cherubs. :o

Well that has been my problem, in a packaway with no dedicated display space in out setting. My friend's display board is absolutely huge, divided up into 30 or so equal boxes. Personally I'd want to have a minimum space per child that could take an A4 sheet displayed portrait or landscape.

 

We only have ten children on roll in September, so it might be possible for me this year.

 

Maz

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Thanks for the replies everyone xD

 

Ah, I see what you mean. Perhaps just back them with some nice paper and a border and then it looks inviting? In the past I have sent each child a postcard from my holidays and asked them to draw or paint me a picture - which they generally bring to show me on the first day back.

 

I didn't send postcards this year as I'd not have had time for anything else! Last year I sent 42 and this year would have been 50 odd! So I decided to just have a holiday instead!

 

I don't really have many ideas about what to put up until I have things from the children to display, so I'll take your advice and just back the boards for now. At least it looks as if they're ready and waiting for something to go up, rather than being totally blank.

 

I love your postcard idea by the way, but I don't blame you for having a break this year - I can't imagine writing out 50+ postcards, and then paying for all the stamps!

 

 

Maybe its about how you approach things with the SMT, Browneyedgirl? We in pre-school are lucky that we don't have too many people breathing down our necks with expectations of what our rooms should look like. I imagine in a school environment it is very different.

 

I don't know exactly what SMT expect with regards to displays at the start of a new term - I haven't been told whether to have displays up or not. My concerns about not having blank walls came about yesterday when I was talking to a fellow NQT - she's going into school the week before the children come back to fill her six display boards so they're not bare. I've been told that my head is very relaxed about planning, i.e. she doesn't ask for it to be submitted and trusts teachers to get on with things, so I hope she has this attitude about display boards too :o

 

 

Yes, I have those concerns too, Panders but a friend does this in a big classroom and it works really well. Children who don't 'produce' much are encouraged to use their space to display whatever they want - so some might bring in a birthday card they've received, or a photograph or their favourite comic, or whatever they want to put up there.

 

I love this idea! :(

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I work in a nursery setting - I very much like the idea of children having their own designated space to display what they want, how they want - up till now I usually just ask the children whether they want to display or take home, if they want to display, I let them choose where - I think I'll try designating though from now on.

 

Building on this, to encourage empty display boards to be filled, I think I will designate myself and staff the same size space as the children - I could put up a photo of myself now and as a young child, also display a couple of items I have found such as a huge feather and a piece of some beautiful hand made wrapping I received a present in - I will write a bit about where I found / how I got them and a little about why I've decided to display and share them...I'm hoping this might start the ball rolling...

 

Alternatively, you could start 'challenges' along the lines of "during the holidays I found...2 spiral shells, a large white feather and two pine cones...What did you find during the holiday?" - could put up photograph of where you found items, with items on display and or photo of items. Hopefully, will also encourage mark making.

 

This would also be a good lead into children's individual interests and hopefully get parents involved also.

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when you designate spaces, how do you allocate - I mean, do you rotate them each half term or something? I only ask because some spaces may be seen to be 'prime spots' and others a little less so. Thinking of my own room, I could see that the display space in the 'high parental traffic' areas would be better than the spaces at, say, the back of the room, or around the corner.

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I only ask because some spaces may be seen to be 'prime spots' and others a little less so.

We don't have this problem Cait - our display boards have to be moved back into the cupboard so everyone's pictures would be displayed in the same place, and at the same height. That said, if the displayboard was narrow and tall I'd put the older children's pictures at the top and the younger ones' at the bottom so they could point them out to their friends and family.

 

Maz

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If I was Ofsted and I came into your room and it was 'displaytastick' I would be really worried.

Remember, when it comes to display, Ofsted are looking for 'difference' they want to see that your walls are either teaching the children something or reflecting what the children are learning.

 

Your display should show what you are actually doing in your setting or what assessment has told you your children need. I do lots of audits of Early Years settings and I always ask to see the evidence that led to a paricular display. If it is Jasper or Percy the Park Keeper I want to know WHY?

 

So as it is September Ofsted would expect to see blanker walls and you will be telling them that you are waiting to talk to the children about their interests BEFORE you fill all of your walls.

 

If you know that your children will have language or vocabulary deficiency then put up pictures/objects that will get them talking. Encouraging speech is the reason for your display. So , you might do really random but interesting pictures or you might do Toy Story 3. The difference is that you have a reason for doing it.

 

Google 'Communication Friendly Spaces' and read what they have to say about display - it will make you think again. I often used to use bright wrapping paper with an lovely contrasting boarder - but no more. I want focus rather than distraction!

 

This is all the more relevant to me as I am in school tomorrow at 7am managing an environment 'set up'. If I get my act together I intend to blog some of the before and after picures with some explaination of the theory around what I am doing. If I manage it I will let you know!

 

Alistair

ABC does.com

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Building on this, to encourage empty display boards to be filled, I think I will designate myself and staff the same size space as the children - I could put up a photo of myself now and as a young child, also display a couple of items I have found such as a huge feather and a piece of some beautiful hand made wrapping I received a present in - I will write a bit about where I found / how I got them and a little about why I've decided to display and share them...I'm hoping this might start the ball rolling...

 

Alternatively, you could start 'challenges' along the lines of "during the holidays I found...2 spiral shells, a large white feather and two pine cones...What did you find during the holiday?" - could put up photograph of where you found items, with items on display and or photo of items. Hopefully, will also encourage mark making.

 

This would also be a good lead into children's individual interests and hopefully get parents involved also.

 

I like these ideas, thanks for sharing xD I can see how these types of displays could prompt the children and encourage their communication.

 

 

If I was Ofsted and I came into your room and it was 'displaytastick' I would be really worried.

Remember, when it comes to display, Ofsted are looking for 'difference' they want to see that your walls are either teaching the children something or reflecting what the children are learning.

 

Your display should show what you are actually doing in your setting or what assessment has told you your children need. I do lots of audits of Early Years settings and I always ask to see the evidence that led to a paricular display. If it is Jasper or Percy the Park Keeper I want to know WHY?

 

So as it is September Ofsted would expect to see blanker walls and you will be telling them that you are waiting to talk to the children about their interests BEFORE you fill all of your walls.

 

If you know that your children will have language or vocabulary deficiency then put up pictures/objects that will get them talking. Encouraging speech is the reason for your display. So , you might do really random but interesting pictures or you might do Toy Story 3. The difference is that you have a reason for doing it.

 

Thank you Alistair - you and the other posters have really reassured me, and given me food for thought! After talking to my friend, who's a fellow NQT, about the displays she's putting up before the children come in, I'd started to worry because I hadn't planned to display anything yet. Now I know that my initial intention was justified :o

 

 

This is all the more relevant to me as I am in school tomorrow at 7am managing an environment 'set up'. If I get my act together I intend to blog some of the before and after picures with some explaination of the theory around what I am doing. If I manage it I will let you know!

 

Again, I look forward to following your progress! :(

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I can't remember if you're in reception or nursery, but I think people have some good advice about not filling up all your boards before hand. If you have reception though perhaps you might think about doing at least one board, if not two with something supportive of whatever you're covering first on, for example if you're looking at numbers in maths a display featuring numbers and their written names and sets of objects.

 

Getting the children to help you fill the boards is a lovely idea, but I wouldn't leave yourself with all six boards to fill up in this manner. As someone has pointed out when term starts things in schools are so hectic that finding time to put up displays can get quite tricky! If you find you've got plenty of time and lots to display you can always take down whatever you've put up but I think I remember you saying either that you are an NQT or new to EYFS this year so don't overestimate how much time you'll have for things like displays. You'll soon find it slipping away on other things!

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I can't remember if you're in reception or nursery...

 

Getting the children to help you fill the boards is a lovely idea, but I wouldn't leave yourself with all six boards to fill up in this manner. As someone has pointed out when term starts things in schools are so hectic that finding time to put up displays can get quite tricky! If you find you've got plenty of time and lots to display you can always take down whatever you've put up but I think I remember you saying either that you are an NQT or new to EYFS this year so don't overestimate how much time you'll have for things like displays. You'll soon find it slipping away on other things!

 

Thank you for the advice :o I'm in nursery, and I'm an NQT. I've taught Reception during a couple of my teaching practices, but I've never taught in nursery before - the learning curve has already been a steep one, and I'm not even in school yet!

 

I agree with you about not leaving all six boards blank. I intend to fill one with pictures of the staff and children, and then another will have information about the EYFS for parents (eventually with some annotated photos of the children). I'd also like to use one of the boards as a learning wall, although I'm still getting my head around this concept and I'm not sure how to implement it in nursery... I'll have two classes (AM and PM), so I assume I'd need to have two learning walls xD

 

That would leave me with two or three boards, which I think I will back and then leave blank for the time-being, until I get some input from the children.

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I also agree with not having all your boards covered with displays. I think as long as your room is welcoming and you have stimulating items, and perhaps a few pictures in your continuous provision, then that is a good beginning. I think pictures of staff and children is a good idea as well and a learning wall at the ready.

Planning for displays can depend a lot on what type of boards you have. If they are high then I would use these for displays reflecting what is going on in nursery for the parents to look at, and if they are at the right height for the children then use them for displaying what they have done, or make them interactive reflecting what you are doing with them.

I used to get myself down to child height and look around to see how they would view the room.

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[quote name='ABCDoes' date='Aug 15 2010, 22:14' post='264447'

This is all the more relevant to me as I am in school tomorrow at 7am managing an environment 'set up'. If I get my act together I intend to blog some of the before and after picures with some explaination of the theory around what I am doing. If I manage it I will let you know!

 

Alistair

ABC does.com

 

Thanks for the explanation and looking forward to your photos!

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I also agree with not having all your boards covered with displays. I think as long as your room is welcoming and you have stimulating items, and perhaps a few pictures in your continuous provision, then that is a good beginning. I think pictures of staff and children is a good idea as well and a learning wall at the ready.

Planning for displays can depend a lot on what type of boards you have. If they are high then I would use these for displays reflecting what is going on in nursery for the parents to look at, and if they are at the right height for the children then use them for displaying what they have done, or make them interactive reflecting what you are doing with them.

I used to get myself down to child height and look around to see how they would view the room.

 

Great advice, thank you :o

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and a learning wall at the ready.

 

Could you (or anyone else) please clarify how a learning wall works in nursery? I think I understand the concept, but I'm not sure how it would work with the two separate classes (AM and PM). Wouldn't you need two walls? And that brings me onto another dilemma which hit me today - how do you effectively resource your continuous provision areas to reflect children's interests when two classes are sharing one room? :o

 

Thank you!

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Could you (or anyone else) please clarify how a learning wall works in nursery? I think I understand the concept, but I'm not sure how it would work with the two separate classes (AM and PM). Wouldn't you need two walls? And that brings me onto another dilemma which hit me today - how do you effectively resource your continuous provision areas to reflect children's interests when two classes are sharing one room? :o

 

Thank you!

 

With regards to the two classes you'll probably find that if you put something in your continuous provision to meet the needs of one set of children you'll find it sparks off an interest in the other set. Also not every single piece of continuous provision will be geared towards the same interest as it were, so if there's a sudden interest in space among some children you wouldn't suddenly kit out the whole room in space related stuff. If a lot were interested in space then obviously there would be more on that and it might develop into a bit of a theme for the room, but at the same time a couple of children might be really interested in cars so you might provide some smaller activities for them as well.

 

Don't get hung up on catering for every single interest all of the time though, as the saying goes, you can't please all of the people all of the time! As long as every child has an interest covered at some point each term that should be fine. Don't forget as well that you need to carry the children's interests along to some extent. Children might develop an interest, but without you pushing along that path and opening new possibilities to them their interests will chop and change and you'll find yourself running ragged trying to keep up and losing a lot of deep learning opportunities.

 

I'm not sure how a learning wall would work in nursery, actually now I think about it I always thought learning wall was the name for the wall that you built up as the learning went along, like with a story plan up one day and then the next day an opening, then a middle etc (obviously that would be an example for older children). What you might have though is a wall with some support things on relating to something you're doing. So for example if you're looking at counting, you might havae a board at child height with numbers and number names and pictures under each number representing that amount of objects. Also having something showing what the different letters look like is always good, so that when they start to pick up letter sounds and want to know "what a d looks like" you can point them in that direction and it will help jog their memories. Maybe someone with more nursery experience than me will be able to come along and give better advice!

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With regards to the two classes you'll probably find that if you put something in your continuous provision to meet the needs of one set of children you'll find it sparks off an interest in the other set. Also not every single piece of continuous provision will be geared towards the same interest as it were, so if there's a sudden interest in space among some children you wouldn't suddenly kit out the whole room in space related stuff.

 

Don't get hung up on catering for every single interest all of the time though, as the saying goes, you can't please all of the people all of the time! As long as every child has an interest covered at some point each term that should be fine.

 

Thank you for the advice - it's easy to get carried away when thinking about everything, and sometimes it's helpful to be a bit more practical and think about how it will all actually work! Obviously it's not realistic to go with everyone's interests all of the time.

 

I'm not sure how a learning wall would work in nursery, actually now I think about it I always thought learning wall was the name for the wall that you built up as the learning went along, like with a story plan up one day and then the next day an opening, then a middle etc (obviously that would be an example for older children).

 

My idea about a learning wall was inspired by this topic by biccy. It sounds as if you start by introducing a theme, then ask the children what they already know and what they'd like to find out, and use the learning wall to document the learning and invite parental input. My only issue is how it would work with two separate classes in nursery - the only logical solution I can see would be to have two different walls, which might not be feasible...

 

 

A quick edit: Kariana, I just noticed that you started the recent forum topic on floor books. To me, these seem similar to learning walls and might be easier to use in nursery (i.e. it'd be more practical to have a book for each class rather than two separate wall displays).

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