I am a massive fan of displays in the classroom. I believe that not only do they make the classroom a more inviting and engaging place to be, but they can also be used within lessons in a more practical way. I started this academic year without my own classroom, due to my timetable being split between two subjects and including quite a lot of KS5 lessons, therefore I was split between six classrooms.
I made use of one of the classrooms that I used for my Health and Social Care lessons to create displays, as it was not ‘owned’ by anyone in particular. The first thing that I thought would be an essential part of the making my displays useful would be to include key words and exam information. I attended a PiXL6 conference in October which included a talk on displays and one thing that was said make displays particularly effective is by using them to make students aware of the exams and inform about exam technique. Exam skills, command words and example papers are an easy way to ensure that all pupils are able to access key information about the exam that they are being prepared for.
Due to some staffing changes partway through this term, I have now found myself with a base in which I teach all of my KS3 lessons. I forever find myself including the same information on my lesson slides; key word spellings, sentence starters, literacy information, next steps codes. Therefore I thought that I should make use of the display boards in that classroom to reduce the repetition on my slides. I am aware that display boards take an extremely long time to create and therefore I strongly think that they should be useful in lessons or useful to pupils in order to justify the time spent on them.
Some other ideas for display boards:
What stuck with you (for use in plenaries, using sticky notes)
A ‘working’ board in which ideas or examples of work are added throughout a scheme of work to reflect the learning happening in the classroom
An extension or engagement board with activities for pupils to complete once they have finished their set work
A devoted differentiation or support board, where support materials are provided for pupils to use or help themselves to if they need support