Monday, 22 July 2019

Student-Created Displays in Our PYP Classroom

I admit it. I really have to consciously work on this. I love to create an inviting classroom but I definitely need to be reflective about how much input the students have in the set-up of the classroom and of creating displays. I just wanted to share some ways in which my students designed how they were going to share their learning this year. 

I was very lucky last year to have a very small class of just 13 students. This made group decision-making a little easier and students were often able to work on the same giant sheet of paper at the same time. In our school we have our displays on backed and bordered boards. I prepared big sheets of paper about the size of the display board for the students to design. 

For this one, the students just went at it and drew their cave painting where they liked. They also wrote what it meant on flaps of paper so that other students could check if the message was communicated correctly.

This next one was for personal inquiries (some students chose to work independently, some collaboratively). They spoke together before even starting their research and decided roughly where their section of the display would be. They voted on how the header would look, where it would be positioned and who would write/draw it. Then, as they researched, they wrote directly onto the giant sheet. 

And finally, I had used this blank map as a pre-unit assessment tool to find out what students knew about the economic activities of different regions of Italy. (If you need to make a giant display, check out the wall art generator, Rasterbator and get your mind out of the gutter!) I then gave them free reign to use it how they pleased to document what they had learned. They chose to paint it and then you can see some students have added on information about landforms, "the industrial triangle," capitals of the regions, etc. When focusing on map skills, the students then asked if they could create a key for this map too (it's the white sheet at the top right). I was more than delighted!

P.S. If you want to see what we did for the summative assessment for this unit of inquiry, check out my post about that!

Next year, I'm going to continue to focus on this and give the students a lot more freedom to design their learning space.

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