Classroom Display Courses 16

Classroom display courses available online

Classroom display courses can be quite hard to find. Face to face courses or INSETS often take up a whole day and I know that eats into your valuable time. That is one of the reasons that classroom display courses work so well for e-learning. It is an ideal topic to learn about on line as you can fit it in around your normal life. If there is a topic in the course that isn’t relevant or that you already know about you can just skip it. If there is something that really grabs your attention you can dive right in and really get to grips with it. You are in charge of your own learning. You are not stuck in a room listening to me drone on about something you don’t need to know!

Current Courses:

There are two levels courses currently available:

  1. Starter Course,
  2. Advanced Course

Starter Course
The starter course is suitable for teachers, all kinds of teaching assistants, learning mentors and librarians. We cover all the basics of displays and is suitable for all key stages. The course costs just £29.99 GBP

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A helpful framework for designing displays

The course includes a  helpful framework for designing displays

I’ll just explain some basics of how it works and what we cover, then please, ask any questions in the comments, if I’ve missed anything.
As I said the course usually has a mix of teachers, teaching assistants and library staff. They can come from any key stage and we often have people from outside the UK involved as well.

How it works

Every week I send you an email with the lesson and a link to a page that contains some written explanations of the topic, maybe a video or two and a slide show of examples. There is a handout, sometimes two, to download as well.
What we cover:
1.Why we have displays, ways of using displays for learning
2. Design guidelines
3. Using colour with confidence and mounting work
4. Fonts and lettering for displays

What you have to do
You are expected to read the course materials, it works best if you join in discussions on the site and complete the  practical task each week.

You can share your completed tasks in the private section of the website. You might also want want to share your ideas on the Facebook page or other social media. Sometimes people prefer to respond privately to the tasks by email & that’s fine too.
You keep your access to all the lessons on line for the duration of the course with an extension if you need it to complete the tasks.

Please don’t worry about the tasks:

Task 1
Look at a display and decide what you think are its main aims and if it is effective. You can use a display found online for task 1. In fact that’s what most people do and I do provide some help finding one.
Task 2
Then task 2 you make a plan for a simple display on a topic of your choice, which you then share by either photographing it OR describe your plan in words. Many people choose to do it that way.
Task 3
You are given a piece of work which you CAN print out and mount, OR you can look at the file and decide how you would mount it and just describe that in words.
Task 4
You can either improve the lettering on your plan in the light of what you’ve learned OR say how you would improve one of the examples I provide.

At the end of the course you also get a pdf file of the lessons that you can keep and work through at your own pace.
What you need

  • Internet access
  • An email account

Optional but nice to have:

  • A printer
  • A digital camera, your phone is fine!

What happens after the course
When you complete the course I send you a pdf certificate of achievement  to print out and keep in your CPD folder. The main thing though is that you should be buzzing with new confidence in your displays ability and full of ideas. I hope that we’ll be able to keep in touch and I’m always glad to see display photos from course participants.

The Advanced Classroom Displays Course

21 days focused days to improve your displays. Runs once a term.

Ideal when for when you need help and support to make your classroom the best it can be but you do not have time to spend hours researching and making displays.

Read more :


Course Dates

 

 

 


A Display Makers Toolbox

In response to lots of requests I’m doing a series of posts to help NQTs and new teaching assistants understand the basics of classroom displays. If you are fairly new to making classroom displays there are some basic points about classroom displays that can be a bit confusing. If you want more why not join us on the 4 week online Classroom Displays Starter Course. Today we look at the tools of the trade:

Basics of Classroom Displays – A Display Maker’s Toolbox

A display makers toolbox

Classroom Displays Basics- A display makers toolbox

I  keep mine in a small plastic toolbox with a lockable lid. It should be locked away when not in use because it contains sharp objects.

You can find most of these items in the Display Maker’s Toolbox section of the bookshop. (Amazon link)

 

  1. An improvised plumb line – long piece of string with heavy weight on the end. If you are serious about getting everything straight then a proper chalk line kit is useful. You can get one from your local DIY store or from The Classroom Displays Bookshop (Amazon)
  2. A good rotary cutter and/or  a craft knife. These should not be used when children are around and in some difficult classes I have removed it from the kit.
  3. A self healing cutting mat. It is too easy to ruin a desk or table when using a craft knife!
  4. A metal ruler – wooden or plastic ones are no good with the craft knife.
  5. Sharp scissors. Get yourself a decent medium sized pair. You could also treat yourself to some fancy edging ones, zig-zags or scallops are good.
  6. A staple gun and matching staples. Worth getting your own, even though school may supply them. Label it with your name, otherwise they get ‘borrowed’!
  7. Sticky putty or similar – for attaching laminated letters, titles etc.
  8. Velcro pads – these are very useful for attaching heavier items or awkward shapes.
  9. Drawing pins or mapping pins – especially coloured ones, can form part of the design of the display and allow items to be easily added and removed. Don’t use them in younger classrooms or where they can be easily removed by children!
  10. A staple remover. I use this kind as I find it far more effective than the pincer sort
Heavy duty staple remover

Heavy duty staple remover

You will also find you build up:

  •   A selection of pens and pencils of various thicknesses,
  • Your own paint brushes for fine work,
  • Assorted erasers including artist’s putty,
  • Masking tape
  • Painter’s tape,
  • Sellotape

You may want your own set of stencils for lettering but that will very much depend on your school policy and style for lettering on displays.

Top Tip: Sticky tape a 5p piece just below the stapling end of the stapler. This stops staples being pushed all the way in and makes them far easier to remove. If you can’t do this use the stapler at an angle to produce a similar effect.

 

I hope this has given you a quick insight into some tools you might need for making displays. If you want to know more then why not have a look at the Classroom Displays Starter Course?

If you are a seasoned display maker, thank you for reading this far! Please leave your tips and suggestions in the comments section. What do you wish someone had told you about making classroom displays when you started?

 


Displays Checklist for NQTs

Displays Checklist for NQTs

So you got the job! Well done! Now the panic starts.   I know you will be full of excited enthusiasm and raring to sort out ‘your’ new classroom. Breathe, and read this Displays checklist for NQTs  before you do anything rash.These are the things you need to consider now:

  • Check school displays policy (should be in Welcome pack or on website)
  • Try to have a chat with your NQT mentor before the end of term about what the school expects and if you will have displays help
  • Ask if the school uses specific fonts and colours
  • Find out what, if any, displays outside your classroom will be your responsibility.
  • Once you have a class list make several sets of labels. Save time and stress by using editable ones from sites like Teachers Pet or Twinkle.
  • Try not to spend your own money on display materials. They will be provided. See the Display Makers Toolbox for useful things you might want to buy.
  • Use the transition day to generate some sort of quick ‘getting to know you’ display that you can have up on the first day.
  • If you are in the UK avoid US based classroom design sites. Display here is more education than decoration.
  • Read this post about Display Basics
  • Join the Classroom Displays Monthly mailing list (see sidebar to sign up)
NQT displays checklist

NQT displays checklist

NQTchecklist – a printable version of the checklist for you to download.

Works for newly appointed teaching assistants too!

Oh and you might like to join the self-study Classroom Displays Starter Course, if you really want to go on studying rather than just enjoying the summer!