interactive displays

Interactive numeracy display – Maths Questions 6

Interactive Maths Display

It can be hard to get creative with numeracy classroom displays. Here’s a lovely interactive numeracy idea to challenge early finishers. It’s also great use of the, slightly grim, brick corners many classrooms have. Rosa says:

Children have various questions to answer. This is used at the beginning of the lesson and the end, for those ‘what do I do now ?’ times.


This display could be adapted for any age just by varying the questions based on their current targets. The questions are colour coded and differentiated so they give a great opportunity for independent work.

The laminated digits and posters make this an almost instant display and, by varying the questions over the year, it can have a permanent place in the classroom. If you look closely you’ll see there is even a space underneath the questions for the children to post their solutions:


Quick to make, easy to copy with an element of interaction and space for children’s voice. All together a really great use of classroom displays as learning objects.

Pirate Pop-Ups – moving toys in Year 3 1

Pirate Pop-Ups, originally uploaded by LindaH.

Pneumatics were used to make these pop-up toys by Year 3. You can see how they work from the back here:
Pirate Pop-up toy - how it works
The basic design used a cereal box. One side was covered in blue funky foam (neoprene) and simple shapes were cut out to make the scene. Children then made a pirate, jolly roger, shark or other monster and stuck it onto a lolly pop stick. The pnuematic system was then attached using masking tape.
This formed part of the Treasure Island themed work for the Telling into Writing project. More details about Telling into Writing on usefulwiki

Behaviour incentives – pizza party points 2

pizza party points, originally uploaded by quemarropa.

Classroom displays can be a vital part of a behaviour management strategy. Lots of teachers are trying out visual incentives to improve behaviour but it can be hard to keep them positive. This is a fun idea which can easily be adapted to suit your classroom.

each table group is assigned a color, which corresponds to a colored pizza topping. the table group that gets the most points each day (for behavior, responsibility, cooperation, respect, etc) puts their topping on the pizza. once we have 30 toppings total -with each table contributing at least 4- we have a pizza party!

The toppings etc. are stored in the pizza box. I think it’s a lot more fun than traffic lights!

I think you would need to have the criteria for points clearly set out so that pupils knew what to aim for. Sometimes we assume they know what we want and really they don’t. Concepts like respect and responsibility need to be explained. The pupils need to know what that concept looks like, what it sounds like. The ones who really need to won’t catch this stuff by osmosis.

Update: Quemarropa adds:

NOTE: the first week of school, i modeled some of the ways students can get points. sometimes, i’ll do an end-of-day “what did we learn?” quiz and award points to tables. sometimes, the first table that has followed instructions completely gets a point. sometimes, if a table member helps another student with a difficult concept, i’ll give the whole table a point. but i’m quick to point out that i’m looking for a variety of things and not every good act gets a point… because i EXPECT good acts from every table. at this point, they know i’m looking for exceptional behavior and classwork. if i notice one table is slacking, i’ll subtly add tallies to the other tables that are on task and usually the kids pick up on this and get back to work. today i had a meeting and another teacher administered a quiz. my kids were absolutely WONDERFUL… respectful and 100% on-task, so every table added a topping to the pizza for showing exemplary behavior with a guest teacher. it’s working beautifully so far!

Great description of the system in action 🙂

Instant Homework Display 8

This display by Classroom Displays Flickr Group member quemarropa remains popular with visitors to the blog despite being four years old. I’ve just updated the post to add some more advice from the comments on her original photo.

Everyone, it seems, is searching for instant classroom displays and bulletin boards this week. This one looks like a really useful one, combining a display with a visible record of homework returns.
quemarropa says:

It’s available for free download. I attached magnetic tape along the back so it could stick to the side of my rolling shelves when students need to play. the rest of the time it hangs from my accordion wall from the book rings at the top

The original  site has long gone but you can still find the board & associated files free to download and print out with full instructions at TeacherNet – Homeworkopoly   The site suggests:

In order for a student to play the game, he or she must complete their homework from the night before and hand it in to the teacher. This is how the student moves around the game board. If the student does not have their homework finished, they don’t get their chance to shake the die and move for the day (with exceptions, of course). Throughout the year, day by day you keep the game going. By starting at the beginning of the year everyone gets into it and by the end of the year everyone is doing their homework regularly.

Recently Noreen added some more details:

i printed everything from the website onto cardstock, then laminated it. I used packing tape to stick the laminated board pieces onto cardboard so it would be sturdy enough to hold up for several years with plastic clothespins clipped around it for my students’ playing pieces. I created all the graphics/instructions in the middle myself (and no longer have the files to share since my computer crashed a few years ago). The pockets for the playing cards and brainbinders is just leftover laminate scraps stuck on with packing tape. I use “It All Adds Up” puzzles from for my brainbinders since there are a lot to choose from and they are half-pages.
Initially (five years ago!) I use the large rings at the top of the board to hang it out of the way during the week, and then used magnetic tape to stick it onto the rolling cart shown above on Mondays when students played. Over time, the tape wouldn’t hold up the weight and the holes where the rings were started to tear. I’m in another classroom now, so I just staple the center parts of the board onto a bulletin board, making sure NOT to staple around the edges so my students can still move their clips around the perimeter. Because it’s so big, they are allowed to stand up on a chair to move their clips on the top portion of the board. Something to keep in mind if you want your kids to be able to move their pieces themselves.

I Spy Science

Welcome Back!, originally uploaded by tuckett.

Here’s a really fun way to welcome a class back after a holiday. Every item in the cabinet relates to something they are going to learn in the following term. There are riddles to solve too:
The Riddles
Tucket says:

I used this idea last year because my own son was so into the I Spy books. I try to use some “easy finds” and some challenges in each clue. Easy to switch around, change, update, and connect to current unit throughout the year. Could easily be adapted to a table top box style display if no showcase is available! Children may begin to write their own science riddles as well! Good Luck. Have fun.

So, just for fun, if you’ve a bit of time to spare and an interest in science why not see how many things you can spot? Can you solve the riddles? Answers on the photo in Flickr or below please.