On Display

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Student work is regularly displayed in the hallways at most schools these days, so much so that we spend a bit of time in graduate school discussing what sort of work is hallway worthy. It sounds strange, but the work you present in the hallway speaks not only about the exciting things happening in the classroom, but in the pride that the students feel in their work. It by no means does it have to be perfect work (as perfect can be subjective, especially when creativity is involved), but effort, passion, and joy should all be apparent in what is displayed. May is the month for my classroom’s work to be displayed on a bulletin in the hallway, and it just so happened that my students had generated some work that I thought would be an excellent fit.

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I’ve talked about it on the blog before, but we’ve been discussing persuasive writing during writing time, Fantastic Mr. Fox during Language Arts, and animal habitats during Science. Students then took what they had learned about habitats to write an ad that would persuade Mr. Fox to live in a habitat that they created. The students also read books in Language Arts that were related to woodland habitats and I had them make vocabulary cards out of leaves. Combined, the ads and the leaves are colorful, funny, and also offer an interactive element as students can flip the leaves to see facts about the vocabulary words written on the front of them.

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I’m really proud of the work they created and so are the students (which is most important). I’ve seen them eye the bulletin board each time we pass it and stop to read each other’s work. I’ve also seen them watching as other kids in the hallway stop to admire what they’ve created. It’s a great way for the whole building to interact with each other and to non-verbally communicate the values of the building to one another: we appreciate creativity, ingenuity, connecting ideas from one subject to the next, and learning for learning’s sake. It’s a great feeling to know the board will be up for a few weeks after I finish student teaching.

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