Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Posters, i.e. words and concepts all around

The school year has begun. Learners must know key words and key concepts. To help process that information they need to see the words, hear the words and use the words. To help see the words they need posters in the classroom. The following link is the best guide I have seen for making posters, Creating effective poster presentations.
Print shops such as Postnet which have sprung up in many towns print such posters if taken to them in digital format.
Most principals have asked what teachers intend doing to improve their marks. Having key words and key concepts in the language of the subject on the walls in the classroom is one way of enhancing the learning.


Anonymous said...

Thank you Pam!
When one looks at exam diagnostic reports, it is clear that in all subjects subject terminology and concepts are a big problem. These need to be drilled and practised, and the poster idea is super!

If learners do not know these basics (knowledge level), they will also not be able to answer application type of questions.

Just think about it... What do you see in foundation phase classrooms? And why?

Dr Pam Miller said...

I went to an educational institution (university/school – I am not saying) today. The posters I saw were poor, some with spelling errors, on A4 pieces of paper, torn, etc. - awful. I popped my nose into a few classrooms but saw no posters I would like to be seen by my child or grandchild. That is the criteria – your child or grandchild! That is how all teachers should look at the walls of their classroom, to enhance their child or grandchild’s learning.

To answer the question ‘What do you see in foundation phase classrooms? And why? ‘ I would like to see words and words and I would like the teacher to play with words until the learners are fluent and fluid with those words.

I would like the teacher to think out of the box, be creative – do whatever is required to get the learners to use the words.

Watch the movie ‘Dirty dancing’. Babe could DANCE when she was fluid and knew the steps. She felt the steps with her heart. And she learned the steps in many places - on a staircase and even on a log above a ravine. The guy, her teacher, was creative in how he got her to learn the rhythm and steps. Get the foundation phase learners to gain confidence in every way possible and use the words and vocabulary of the subject material.

Anonymous said...

The foundation phase classrooms I know are 'rich' in terms of colourful A3 posters against the walls. The letters of the alphabet, capital letter together with the 'small' one, numbers with the same number of dots, etc. Everyday learners see these, teachers refer to these when they write or calculate. Subtlety, it is 'drilled' until learners know them and their meanings - are fluent.
I really think FET teachers could learn from this.
If learners in a grade 10 classroom could, on a daily basis, see, e.g.the definition of an input device with pictures of different input devices, etc. that will 'stick' and they will be able to answer questions about these in an exam.