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Attractive writing area

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by Calipo, Oct 30, 2008.

  1. Hi, I am looking for some inspiration for the writing area. At the moment we have a range of different coloured/sized paper, writing books, diaries, post cards, little cards for birthdays etc, clipboards, a wide variety of pens/ pencils/ felts/ crayons etc, all the sparkly pens and pens with bits on, stencils, wipe boards, chalk boards, magnetic letters and boards, textured letters, felt letters, rolls of wallpaper for big marking etc. Yet despite all this the writing area is still very boring. I think it might be the presentation or maybe its just that we need to have some different resources in there? We have cabinets and a set of draws then some of the things are left out on the table. The children can obviously help themselves to anything they want to use!

    I would love to hear any exciting ideas you have for your writing area!

    Thank you!!
  2. I'm glad someone brought this up - I thought I had a nice writing area with post-its, staplers, stickers, books, pens, scissors, glue-sticks, paper etc, (some of which you might like to add to your writing area Calipo) but all my children did was make a complete mess! I had glue everywhere, post-its all around the classroom, cut up stickers, and not a lot of productive writing going on. I was hoping that after a few weeks it might get better, but half a term in, and the children still don't seem to be using it 'properly'. I have a mixed rec. / yr. 1 class - any advice on what to try next??? Or some simple resources to add to my writing area to make the children more productive???

  3. We have painted a wall with blackboard paint - its not next tot e writing area unfortunately - its in the vreative area but the kids love it.

  4. tricky7

    tricky7 New commenter

    The first 2 posts have some great suggestions about what to have in your writing area. The trick may be not to have to much in there so it does not make a mess daily and then top it up at the end of the day. It is one of the most popular areas in my classroom.

    We have: Selection of different of writing equipment - pens, pencils, crayons, pencil crayons, whiteboards and pens. Also get different fancy pens from pound shops etc as find this encourages writing, rather than just the same pencils as round the class.

    Fixing box - with hole punch, glue, scissors, staples, stapler, treasury tags, paper clips

    Different papers - A4 paper, A5 paper, card, cards, note pads, books, post sticks, even some colouring sheets, pencil control sheets and letter formation sheets etc ( as find children do like doing these as well ! ), register templates

    Also have stencils, letter stampers

    Hope this helps
  5. Fantastic!! I've kind of let them get on with it during this first half-term, but I think I'll def make it more structured from now on - ie different things on different days / weeks. I thought it might be a little bit like the children with their painting - when they first come in, they tend to want to cover the whole paper (usually with their painting resembling nothing), but over time it develops form and texture. I was hoping the novelty would wear off in the writing area, and they would use it more productively, but it doesn't seem to be happening - I'll try and keep it more simple from now on.

    I love the idea of a 'fixing' box, and I'll def be putting my colouring sheets, worksheets in their too. I'm always amazed at how many of my boys like it, will try and think of ways to engage them even more - might see if I can find some 'Ben 10' stationery, they love it!!

    Thanks so much!
  6. Why are we surprised that the children should like to work on letter formation sheets? Why are we almost apologetic about supplying them? The main reason that children don't 'write' in the 'writing area' is that they lack the skills to do so. I guarantee that if you start to systematically teach children how to correctly form letters in a supervised way, instead of waiting for them discover it for themselves, they will take the newly learnt skills into the writing area and begin to produce legible print all over the place! You have all provided a stimulating envirnoment, a wide range of resources and the opportunity to use them. The missing factor is the skill to do so. Try it and see.

  7. NellyFUF

    NellyFUF Lead commenter

    Where've you been all my life Oscar's mum?

    hey, you're not really our Vickie are you?
  8. Just thought I'd let you know that I haven't just provided the stuff and let them get on with it, I have worked with them in the area, I teach letter formation on more than one occasion every day, etc, but they still seem to be getting over-stimluated by all the bits in there - it's almost as though there's too much choice. Hence, why I'm reverting to having a few things at a time!
  9. Just realised that I seem to have contradicted myself in my last two posts - what I meant in the first post when I said ' let them get on with it', is after a bit of input from me or my TA, not totally from scratch. I will be providing more structure in the coming weeks.
  10. Hi, just wanted to say thank you for some fantastic ideas! Like holly I do teach the children letter formation, the purpose of writing etc through structured activities and the children do use the writing area themselves too. I was more asking for ideas on how the writing area is presented. I have been speaking to a friend of mine today who is a reception teacher and she uses the topic she is working on as a stimulus for her area, for example; when the topic is mini beasts she may have a big spiders web as a kind of tent for the children over the top of the writing area with hanging letters etc. . . .

    Again, thankyou for all your ideas so far!
  11. So many lovely resources, developing skills....what about purpose??? I had lots of success once when I included Dora the Explorer - with a back pack as a post box. The children wrote to Dora to tell them their favourite......... and Dora wrote back, they loved it and the most reluctant writers were begging to get into the writing corner. Maybe if your children are into Ben 10 you could collage a pic of him or one of his characters for the chn to write to...have to think of something for them to post their letters into though and take the time to reply (obviously you need some idea of what they wrote to the character about [​IMG] )

    Good luck
  12. Great ideas!


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