We’ve all been there: moving into an empty classroom and having to stare at the dreary off-white walls and tattered displays that haven’t been replaced in over a year. Research suggests that classrooms with engaging resources stimulate children’s minds and enable them to learn more. However, putting up displays can be daunting work. It always looks easy and straightforward, but takes much longer than expected and sometimes doesn’t appear how you imagined. We've put together some quick hacks that will help you have a bright and beautiful classroom quickly and easily.
1. Use students’ work
Firstly, once students are told that their work has a chance to go on the wall, many jump at the opportunity to create an artistic masterpiece. It’s also an easy way to fill space and is personal to you and your teaching groups. If some pupils finish early, have them neatly draw out headings or summarise what the work is about, so all that’s left for you to do is pop them on the wall.
2. Use wrapping paper
Using dusty coloured sugar papers and giant rolls of display paper are a thing of the past; why settle for one block colour, when you can have a beautiful pattern? Wrapping paper is a cheap and easy alternative. Head to your local card shop, or even look online. You may even be able to find themed paper. We recently tracked down some Roald Dahl paper for a Matilda display.
3. Ask for help
Don’t try and put up displays on your own. You’ll end up with back ache, a twisted ankle and a ripped piece of paper. Each day, you’re surrounded by students who are often eager to help. This can act as a great reward system for students who work hard. Reward them with helping you put up a beautiful display, and then offer them a small token to say thank you. You’d be surprised how excited students get using a staple gun (supervised, of course!)
4. 3D displays
Don’t restrict yourself and presume that displays have to be flat and against the wall. Some of the most innovative displays we’ve seen involve attaching models to the boards or ceilings. This works great for maths, where you can teach about the nets of a shape, decorate them and hang them up. They immediately grab your attention when you walk in and look stunning.