Photographs by Linda Hartley
TOOLS FOR LEARNING Good wall displays should support the process of learning. Pupils should refer to the display to support them in aquiring new conceptual knowledge, carrying out learning tasks or consolidating prior learning. Consider the height and position for easy access for pupils.
INTERACTIVE Displays where children can engage, respond and contribute hold their attention and are therefore more effectively reinforce the key points. Static presentations run the risk of blending into the background and becoming invisible, whereas interactive displays draw in children's attention. Making these displays can be fun and there are limitless ways of creating interaction - involve the children in thinking of innovative ideas.
PROMOTERS OF INCLUSION To ensure that your wall displays are inclusive consider the following points:
use a range of images that reflect the ethnic diversity of the pupils
use the home languages for vocabulary labels or pupils' writing where relevant and usefulavoid stereotypesevaluate
the content of your topics: have you used Literacy texts from a variety
of ethnic groups? Have you included references to other cultures in
mathematics,e.g. through tesselating patterns, number systems,
acknowledging the roots of our number system.
The use of dual language posters can save time when preparing wall displays and resources, however make sure that the displays are relevant to current learning and meaningful to the pupils. Asking pupils to contribute their own dual language labels, captions or dual language texts can be an exciting and manageable way of including pupils.
SUPPORTIVE OF PRIOR LEARNING Wall displays can be effective in reinforcing concepts and skills from prior lessons. For these types of displays consider making them interactive so that children actively engage in the revision through answering questions, matching items, creating sentences/phrases, or adding ideas, solving problems etc. This will make the learning memorable and fun and lead to more 'stickiness' in terms of long term recall.
Types of display
Pupils with English as an additional language can benefit greatly from classroom wall displays. Consider creating a range of different displays to support pupils in different ways.
Working walls support learning of concepts, skills and vocabulary
are effective in displaying key aspects of the current or recent lesson, for example;
Working walls are dynamic and ever-changing to reflect work in progress.
They may show a process such as 'our brainstorm' or 'our story draft'
or 'our reworking or finished product'. They are designed to remind
pupils of recent concepts and skills covered, allowing them to
consolidate key points. Pupils may even add to some displays with ideas
or vocabulary on sticky notes.
These examples of literacy working walls show a range of features such as clear targets or learnging intentions, key features of genre, key vocabulary and sentence structures used. They are also visually stimulating and some provide opportunities for pupil participation.
Working walls should display work in progress or evolving rather than neat finished products. The working wall should provide useful tools to support chidlren in their own writing. This numeracy working wall shows key componenets such as step by step guides, learning intention, demonstration sheets, key vocabulary and visual support.
This numeracy working wall shows key componenets such as step by step guides, learning intention, demonstration sheets, key vocabulary and visual support.
Interactive displays engage pupils
Interactive displays are an excellent way to enable pupils to consolidate key points by actively taking part in the display. Interactive displays could include;
Displays of completed work inspire and encourage pride in achievements
Displays of completed work can also provide opportunities for consolidatiion. Including the following elements can maximise their usefulness;
Evaluate your displays to maximise effectiveness
Carrying out a self-evaluation of your displays can be a useful way of finding out what aspects are included and what aspects pupils find useful. Points to consider:
Pupil questionnaires can elicit valuable feedback which can be used to enhance your wall displays. Points to consider for questions for the children to answer: