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Following on from my question on nursery routines I have another query.(well actually several on the same theme)


Do you always have childrens work up on display?


If so is the work labelled with names ?


Are there other displays with childrens contributions which are not labelled?


Do you have explanatory notes accompanying displays?


Are the displays planned ,with the activities aimed at producing the work - or do they just happen ( when a skill building exercise produces some work that would be good to share for example).


Im asking because the nursery where i am on supply for a few weeks has no childrens work on obvious display . There is little creative work planned and what there is ,is product driven .Mostly the displays are 1 picture where some children have painted or collaged a part of a predrawn outline.

The head is keen for me to make some subtle changes but I dont want to go too far.

Any contributions would be gratefully read.

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I run a pre school in a church hall that is used by other users.

We are not allowed to keep any work up on the walls at all after the session which makes displays very difficult.

I had huge arguments before Easter as Ofsted were coming and eventually they let me put up 3 displays but i had to remove them for the weekends and cover them with plain paper at night as the ballet teacher complained that her class were distracted by them!!!!!

Very kindly!!!!! the church have bought us 2 display boards now with doors on to use, i have been to look at them and they are tiny!!!!! But must be gratful for small mercys i suppose.

When i can get childrens work up i do, theyre names can be on there depending on what sort of display it is, its always labled with simple explanation if needed, most are to do with the topic we are doing but if say a staff member does a brill craft activity i will kidnap the work for a while to display.



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We display all the childrens work, we have displays that are linked to the topic and we have displays of work they do in our "gallery", that can be anything brought in from home or done in the setting. We also display any junk modelling on a table, and we have displays of photographs of the children playing and involved in activities.

All the work is labelled with names and a brief explanation of what was involved. The children can add to the displays when ever they wish and they help put them up and decide what goes where.

Edited by Guest
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hi there Caroline, just thought Id take the time to welome you in and thank you for your first contribution.


I dont think we are in quite the same suituation as Hali, but we dont have a lot ofnspace for display. Radiators cover erevery available low level s[pace which rules out dislay boards at children's heights; and windows everywhere which I hate to cover, fill most of the walls. We do display what we can, as much variet as possible, so ther is always some writng , some maths, painting, soemthing associatde with the theme or a story, plus of course models and touchy feely things. We also hang things, but we have an asbestos ceiling so there is a limit to what we can hang.

We are expected to label, title and date all displays and the children like to see thier name writen next to thier piece. In addition we have most labels written bilingually since most of our children are EAL. Unafitz, I agree with the example you describe, i think display says an awful lot about a setting and what it values.

In remember looking at a reception job in a school where the only display I saw was 25 absolutely identical copies of a house made up from different shapes, in my head, I could just hear them saying 'no, you must put that red triangle here...no...here...'


having said that, I hate doing displays cos Im not good at making them look wonderful, unlke my colleague who has a natural flair for display. You can always tell the difference between hers and mine. :o

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Hi unafitz I like you am working in a nursery and have lots of room for display. We have one board for computer art - all the childrens own work, can be any thing from a single splash of colour to a picture but usually a mass of random shapes and colour. I usually have a couple of boards with a flat surface display infront where I display pictures and objects to handle - shells / colour display, where children are asked to contribute by bring ing in non breakables from home. I have a display of photographs with the children achieving their Early Learning goals with the goals written out. Topic board with topic related photographs and words. The rest I use for Art work, we always have a couple of boards for paintings, we recently went to a farm and all the children painted an animal, I have grouped all the sheep together with a speech balloon saying " Baa. " said the Sheep etc, I have to own up I have cut them out but did ask the children first, all the pictures are named - I print off several sheets of names onto card at the start of term, Children also name their duplo models which they leave on a display cupboard next to a sign - Please look at my Work to show parents at the end of the session, other displays we have sometimes combine a number of different activities we have done - I just keep a few from each activity so the children still have something to take home, these may have a single colour theme, yellow collage, bead rolling, blow painting, bubble painting, printing etc.

We make threadings from coloured paper / tissue/ card/ wrapping paper/ cake cases anything that you might call rubbish ( ops recycled materials I ment to say) which we hang. We also have a board of drawings with a dictated sentence underneath, usually topic related or holiday news.

I also always make sure we have a contribution from every child, no one is made to do the activites but I will often leave a space and tell a child this is where I am going to put their picture when they are ready to do one, it usually works, we usually have a big huddle around the table and it is a hive of activity. We also have a small display board at childrens own height for them to display their own work, they love it and bring things in from home, or what is sad some children put it up at nursery because they know it goes in the bin at home. I love doing displays but I know it is not everybodies cup of tea, As part of the display I also put up a sign Evidence towards ..Early learning Goal I don't bother with the stepping stone unless it doesn't make sense, less typing.

Good luck with the rest of the time you have at this nursery, last term I had to have a week off with flu and was grateful to find a display had been done by the supply teacher they don't normally bother.

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I think displays of the children's work is really important to help them feel they 'belong'. Our cloakroom area is our 'gallery' and the pictures here get changed regularly. I am also really lucky because the hall committee have put up pinboarding all across one end of the hall for playgroup to use. Unfortunately it's not at childrens height but I'm not moaning. Here I make up displays using childrens work, pictures, posters or whatever comes to hand!! These displays tend to evolve over a few weeks and are usually topic related. However, our topics often end up going off at tangents so I never know what we're going to end up with! :D I always try to label the displays and put names on the children's work so that parents can identfy their childs work. I made up printed stickers to go on artwork but my assessor told me off. She said that the names should be written in quite large writing in the top left hand corner of the picture. Don't know what the rest of you think about this.

Perhaps the rest of the staff aren't 'arty' unafitz and don't feel confident enough to make displays. This could be an area you can make a difference - putting up some simple displays to show that its not necessarily difficult or time consuming. I'm sure the children would appreciate it too. :)

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Hi Unafitz

We have displays up which change each term with our topic. We have two big display boards which tend to be around the topic and then we have window ledges and another wall which are sometimes to do with the topic but quite often are used for things that the children have done in the course of a session. So we often display models they have made with the construction toys. They are labelled with their names, we have labels ready done on the computer and laminated. I noticed that Beau said that was frowned upon. But we often cut around a child's painting, leaving a small border, just to make them look neater. This means there is no space for their names on the actual piece of work. Sometimes the children like to "write" their own labels especially if its for a model.

Our displays for the topic tend to start with an idea and then develop depending on what the children want to do. They have a say in quite a lot of what goes on. So we never make an activity plan for these because sometimes what starts out as an idea by us ends up being what the children develop themselves. We usually have a title for each display. This term we are taking "Row your boat" as our topic and our main display is going to be a boat on a stream but the other board is going to be decided upon by the children sometime next week.


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Beau we also insist on written labels in the top left hand corner. Written because we are modelling writing their names (although we also encourage them to make their own like Linda suggest); and left hand side because most of our children are EAL and thier home scripts are written right to left. Always starting on the left encourages them to see that English is written left to right, and top to bottom. perhaps ther are other reasons too, but those are the ones we give when we have new students or staff memebers.


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Thanks to you all for your kind replies.

I agree that the staff aren't 'arty' and the small amount of display I have done so far has been met with " Oh, thats a good idea/looks nice etc" so its not that they are anti creativity from me or anyone else.


I shall try to have a creative activity a couple of times a week while Im there and put up a simple display or 2 using labels and descriptions /explanations .


I was interested in the methods used to annotate the work . I saw nothing wrong with printed labels (in fact was about to make a mental note to myself for future use) but the explanation from Mundia cleared that all up.The nursery has a lot of EAL families and I just didnt think of the implications of not handwriting and using the lower right for labelling. Thanks for that.

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