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Classroom set up. getting frustrated #singfromthesamesongsheet?


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I need some advice :(

Last year when Ofsted visited they graded me Good. However they said the classroom environment could do with some 'de-cluttering'. They didnt like things hanging from the ceilings and said there was too much information around the room, which results in the chn not knowing where to go for key information etc etc etc. So i obviously acted on these recommendations and de-cluttered my room. We have had a visit this week from someone else who says the classroom is too 'sterile'!!! What are you supposed to do? What are your opinions on this. I'm happy to do whatever is going to help the chn learn and enjoy the environment in which they spend a huge amount of their time.

Also when you do a writing focus, for example, are all of your activities based around the concept you are teaching or do chn still access the writing/construction/roleplay etc. areas that are not focussed on that concept. My head is under the impression that the chn shouldn't be in the sand and water or on the bikes if our focus on the carpet was Little Red Riding Hood!

In anticipation xx

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I agree with what you say about different people saying different things but don't know what to suggest- I still haven't figured it out yet! Our improvement advisor will tell us to do something, we do it and then she says its not right!

I'm a bit confused as to why you think children shouldn't be playing in the sand or on bikes if you are talking about 'little red riding hood'.

We have a focus topic based on the children's interests but not all of our activities relate to that topic. I think it would be too much for the children and not all the children will have an interest in the topic so they need something else that will interest them.

Hope that helps :1b

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As always, I will do what has been suggested and then undo it when they don't like anymore ;)

That is exactly my point that I keep telling my head teacher, he has no experience in the early years and admits himself that he has no idea. Don't worry tho, my class will continue to access all areas of the curriculum


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A de-clutter can be a good thing, sometimes the stuff that is there just becomes "wallpaper" and everyone stops seeing the purpose of it. A refresh is no bad thing!

"Sterile" can be a different thing. I might consider a classroom sterile if I see a lack of depth in the continuous provision. The two advisers may be seeing and commenting on different things.

However advice is only ever that. Advice. It can be based on much experience, but it is still advice. So what do YOU want in your room? Is it adding value and making a difference to children's outcomes? Then keep it. If not review and change it. An environment needs to be a dynamic thing.

Re the HT:

Learning in the 7 areas is a continuous thing and I wouldn't personally expect to see everyone working on learning from the carpet input straight afterwards. You may, however, need to demonstrate and articulate what the children are getting from the environment (this goes with my thoughts above). How can you use your context for learning (ie your theme/book etc) to act as a vehicle for extending learning in the different zones? What opportunities are there to consolidate and practice new and recently introduced concepts and skills?

If you can articulate this then you can show your HT what learning is taking place.


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I sympathise with "beentothefarside" I have a new head who wants words putting up everywhere! I took down my random laminated words years ago, as children never used them and when they did they copied them rather than using phonic knowledge and some just copied them with no understanding. Hessian walls, not hessian walls, colour, no colour, hanging things, not hanging things ....etc I fed up the hours I waste jumping through the latest hoop!

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