What’s on Your Walls??

Many have said that we display what we value.  Yet, in so many programs, the walls tell a different story from the written materials about the program.  Brochures and websites are about children’s creativity and individuality.  But, when I visit some sites,  I see the hallway and classroom walls covered with things either purchased or created by adults and/or with adult-made projects that all of the children have done, such as pre—cut bugs with pre-cut parts that children are allowed to paste on “however they want”.  In one accredited site, the hallways were full of purchased decorations.  I gently suggested to the director that children’s creative work could be displayed in the hallways and he said that in the classrooms, children do their own thing, but the hallways are where the staff likes to “make things pretty”.  So, does it mean that the staff thinks that only purchased things are “pretty”??  It makes one wonder. There are programs where some of the art is really art – it all looks different and each piece is unique.  There are some where different children clearly have different ideas about whatever is being studied.  Those are the walls that excite me.  These are the places where I know right away that children’s uniqueness is valued and children are encouraged to explore and create.  What’s on your walls?

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