Making Your Classroom Inspirational
As teachers we can sometimes get so focussed on every other aspect of teaching that we sometimes forget to see the classroom environments we create for our students to learn within. However, put yourself into your students’ shoes: Is the classroom you are working in inviting and settling? Are your displays interesting, engaging and interactive? Would the walls around put you in the right frame of mind for some serious learning?
It’s with these thoughts in mind that I am so interested in discovering the work other practitioners do to make their spaces vibrant, relevant and welcoming.
At the start of the academic year many teachers will share their new displays on social media to provide inspiration for others. Enthused by so many of the wonderful ideas that I found on Twitter, I put together this collection of truly exceptional displays which will hopefully help you to transform your own classroom.
I just love this display for its intricate details, including coffee-stained extracts, and a map of Brumley, the setting for JB Priestley’s classic text. Students couldn’t help but be inspired by this.
Likewise, this teacher has taken signifiers of crime fiction and applied them to An Inspector Calls. Students know the significance of a ‘police line-up’ and this display helps them to understand the immorality of the Birlings, even if Gerald’s legs appear to be missing!
Of Mice and Men Display
What’s so great about this example is it uses QR codes that send students to specific extracts or contextual information web pages. Students just hover their phones over the codes using their phones and the phone does the rest.
This teacher has applied of time and effort into utilising every area of the classroom, and with the added bonus of the natural light it’s just such an inviting space for students.
Classroom of the future
Check out this beautiful learning environment for a primary school class – it’s just stunning! Imagine being a student in this class.
Simple but effective.
Bowral High School have successfully implemented personalised reading posters for all staff show teachers and support staff model a love of reading for all students and hopefully generate interesting discussions about Literature. I’ve used these in previous schools and found they really do help many students to take more of an active interest in reading.
At this school they use ‘coffee-inspired’ branding as a theme for promoting Literacy. Reading displays as consistent and coherent as this will help get students intrigued and engaged.
There is great use of Soviet-style paraphernalia to get across some of the key themes of Animal Farm and I particularly like the font that resembles the writing of the pigs.
This teacher has also made the 19th century volumes a focus in her classroom. We’ve all got them, but what do we actually use these tomes for? I’ve always found the most able are curious about these, so this display actively encourages students to give them a go.
I’ve often heard displays that only show pictures and posters being referred to as ‘wallpaper’ – they’re only to look at and serve no other purpose. Here, this teacher has used their wall to provide additional challenge sheets and rag coded documents for their students to use. Make your displays useful, don’t just see them as an after-thought.
Finally, if you’ve got art skills then show them off! This teacher has put together hand-drawn versions of famous titles to put on display in her classroom. You can only imagine the students’ faces when they saw them and see the effort their teacher has put in for her students.
With thanks to @EcclesMiss, @HistTeach55, @miss_goodyear, @miss_m, @BowralHS, @MissLLand, @jackbenstead, @missjessicaem, @misskempenglish and @miss_smrc for allowing me to share their fantastic displays.