Providing meaningful documentation has many benefits in the early childhood classroom. Today I want to share some examples of meaningful documentation from Rosa Parks ECEC here in Tulsa, OK.
What is Documentation?
To put it simply, documentation is a way to track students' learning and thinking. When done correctly, documentation should take it's viewer on a journey through the way the children are thinking about what they are learning.
Why is this important?
For the Students: When children visually see that what they are thinking about is valued so much that it is documented and displayed proudly, it allows them to take pride and ownership over that thinking. Visible documentation may also serve to spark new ideas.
For Visitors: It is also important for visitors to the classroom to be able to see what the children are interested in and learning about without having to ask anyone.
For the Teachers: Finally, documentation is important for the teachers to be able to track students' learning and thinking in order to plan where to go next and how to scaffold children's thinking.
There are numerous types of documentation, but for today's post I want to share examples of Documentation Panels with you.
As you can see from the examples, documenting students' learning and thinking provides a much richer way of looking at the world as children see it. It also allows others to see the immense learning taking place in the classroom on a daily basis.
I hope you gained some inspiration from these documentation panels from Rosa Parks ECEC.
What is your favorite way to document students' learning and thinking?
Have a documentation panel you would like to share? Place a pic in the comments!
What I need to know: How did the teacher mount these 3D items??? Love these displays, but struggle with setting them up.
We used command (removable adhesive) strips to attach the display to the wall. You can hot glue the ribbon spools or bottle lids to the posterboards.
I love the examples you showed, I work at a preschool and is very common to ask children about their work but I will implement this examples on the Cultural Week. Thank you
Inspirational display boards and what a journey! Thank you
What I would like to know is what was the time gap between the activity and the display? And, how long would these display boards remain up on the wall for before another display took it’s place ?
I love looking at this stuff. Teacher are just so awesome, and creative. Honestly, I have done dramatic documentation boards for professional development, and for the tours that came through my former “model” school. They are beautiful, and inspirational, however most of my documentation is in the form of journals, photos, and sticky note that never do get organized like this. I think knowing this helps teachers to let go of the feeling that they cannot do this with the time/planning time they have, and the prioritize realistically, and meaningfully to themselves, their kids, and parents.
Thanks for sharing your journey, Ellie! We are all on different points in this journey and yes documentation comes in many forms! Documentation is so important and finding the most meaningful way to document children’s wondering and teacher wonderings is vital!
I believe and practice that educator,s way of teaching is reflect on their expression and what they said and what they do . Documentation is important and need to keep for our record and to follow the learning.
HI Sally! I completed your masterclass on Wonder Based Learning and I took a photo of your “Conversation Clipboard” slide but it’s blurry, and now I can’t remember how you use it! I’d like to implement it into my classroom. I did a few searches but didn’t find anything. Can you please explain how you use this? THANK YOU!
Yes! It’s actually very simple! We had clipboards available to write conversations of children’s words and teacher’s words! We would reflect each day to draw out the thread of interest!
Do you have a favorite book or reference about documentation?
We have several in depth blog posts inside Fairy Dust Teaching if you search “documentation”
I also highly recommend you checking out our NEW Wonder Tribe! In several of the courses we look in depth of at documentation with many examples!
As far as books, I would recommend, Documenting Children’s Meaning by Jason Avery!
Many resources out there to help support you and your journey!