Experiencing coming to the classroom where the students were very busy, I heard teachers giving commence on the school’s commitment board to display students’ work with several questions: “Why are we spending all this time doing this? Who is the audience? Are we just trying to impress visitors to our school?” These questions deserve a thoughtful answer. Linda Henke (1970) stated that there were three most important things we could communicate to students:” This work is important”.” You can do this”. “I will help you”.
Referring to the exposure above, here is my attempt to provide not only the theoretical framework, but also the benefit of displaying the students’ work in teaching and learning process.
Children are likely to get bored easily in learning. They tend to explore their environment rather than sit quietly listening to their teacher explaining the lesson. Particular approaches are required to conduct a well organised teaching and learning process which aimed to the success. One technique that is going to be introduced is displaying the students’ work as well as the effect in teaching and learning process. To understand thoroughly the effect of displaying students’s work, here are several questions to discuss:
- What is students’ work in children class like?
- Why should students’ work be displayed?
- When should student’s work be displayed?
- How to display it?
1. Types of students’ work.
In teaching and learning process, managing students’ work becomes very important for teachers to measure students’ comprehension to the lesson. Furthermore, providing students with exercises is part of lesson planning prepared by teachers before coming to the classroom. Several exercises or typical children class acitivities such as story writing, essay, poetry, reports, models, graphs and drawings are recomended. In brief, every activities which shows students’ creativity should be facilitated by teachers.
2. Theories of displaying students’ work.
Displaying students’ work is one of the effective ways in raising the students’ motivation in learning. Students will feel that they are given more appreciation of their work. As a matter of fact, appreciation is merely similiar to positive reinforcement which obviously affect to the students’ success in learning. This fact was noted by BF. Skinner (1938) with his Reinforcement theory: “Positive reinforcement, or ‘rewards’ can include verbal reinforcement such as ‘That’s great’ or ‘You’re certainly on the right track’ through to more tangible rewards such as a certificate at the end of the course or displaying the work”.
Furthermore, Linda Henk (1960) in Displaying Students’ Work gives more thorough description of how important the techniques is in achieving the success in teaching learning process. There are four important components she introduced:
Communicating High Expectations
Effective displays can communicate clearly to student that they are capable of high quality creative and critical thinking and sophisticated inquiry and communication.
Creating a Clear Vision of What Quality Looks like
Displays of student learning work can go a long way toward explicating for students what might be possible.
Promoting Teacher Reflection
Effective displays of student work are not just for students—they have great potential for improving teaching through teachers’ thoughtful reflection on students’ learning work.
The Aesthetics of Display
The displays of learning work merit thoughtful attention not just to the content of the display but also to the aesthetics.
Based on the theories above, we could see how can Displaying students’ work give a great contribution to the success of teaching and learning proccess. Futhermore, this is not only raising students motivation in learning, but also reflecting several important components such as, teachers’ thoughtful reflection on students’ learning work, conducive learning atmosphere and aesthetic classroom environment.
3. Time management for displaying the students’ work.
Managing time for displaying students’ work should go along with academic calender of the school to avoid problem in arranging the displays. Infact, not every single students’ work should be displayed due to the limit of space as well as the quality of the work. The best time to display the work is every mid and end of term of school academic calender.
4. How to display the students’ work
In displaying the student’s work, teacher should also consider the aesthetic component of effective display as stated by Linda Henke (1970) “The use of color and layout can certainly influence viewers’ willingness to stop and examine the work”. Furthermore, when it is fulfilling the criteria of good and eye-catching display, we can see the impact to the students attitude toward the learning activity. How to make it? Here are the steps of how to make a good and eye-catching display.
- The display should be placed on strategic position that students can easily see it.
- The display should be arranged based on the students individual work so that they wouldn’t be mixed one onother.
- To make it more eye-catching, make it well-arranged with colorful decoration.
To sum up, teaching children class requires not only more effort in designing the classroom activity, but also being a better facilitator for students to guide them to an effective learning process. Reinforcement in the form of appreciation of the students work could encourage the students to show their best performance of their work. This is very obvious that the students high quality and creative thinking could be developed along with the appreciation of their work through the effective and well-arrangement students’ work display. The more reinforcement you give to the students, the better performance they will show.
- BF. Skinner, (1938). The Behavior of Organisms: An Experimental Analysis. Cambridge, Massachusetts: B.F. Skinner Foundation.
- Linda Henke(1970). Displaying Student Work.