Dedicated to being creative

24th September 2004 at 01:00
We have been looking at the impact of motivational posters on children in becoming responsible and independent learners, as part of a multi-sensory approach.

Using a number of publications on accelerated learning which I found at www.alite.co.uk, I selected words for characteristics associated with being a good learner. My Year 6 class then used a dictionary to find the meanings of these words. I used Publisher and PowerPoint to produce posters. Each poster consisted of a single word in a different colour on a bright background to add appeal.

During lesson and assembly time we discussed the meanings of the words. For example, the children recognised that "creativity" and "imagination" described characteristics that enabled Monet to paint wonderful pictures and that "dedication" was a vital characteristic for success in sports.

We then talked about how creativity and dedication are important for anyone to achieve their potential. We identified characteristics children felt they had and also picked ones to work on. Children chose these by ranking them in order of what they most wanted to achieve. I guided them towards achievable targets that they could demonstrate in lessons. Then the children used the computer to create their own posters using their target words, or others they had thought of. I grouped the children in mixed-ability pairs and helped them access the tools so that they could make posters that felt like their own. We displayed the posters around the school and discussed them with other children in assembly. Teachers in our area's learning community network visited and took posters back to their schools. The children have learned more about independent learning and setting themselves targets.

John Tilley

Strand facilitator for accelerated learning. Colmore Junior School, King's Heath, Birmingham For more about the project: Email: jtilley@colmorej.bham.sch.uk

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