Throw-Back Thursday: Documentation Panels


I wrote this Throw-Back Thursday post  for my original YYR blog, on November 26, 2011. Three years later, I still have the same questions!

Today I was thinking about documentation panels.  In Reggio-inspired schools, teachers and children, make learning visible, by posting large panels, filled with photos, text, and artifacts, showing learning.  This is a way for children to revisit their own learning, and see what friends are up to.  It allows family members and others in the community to easily see what’s going on in the classroom.  And it allows teachers another view, of a specific child or the group as a whole.

In our home, I haven’t created documentation panels, but I’d like to.  Both kids love to look at photographs, but we usually look at them on a computer.  I’m playing with pulling specific photos into albums within iPhoto – you can view them on one page, or convert them into a slideshow very easily, but I still think it lacks the richness of an actual documentation panel.  Maybe this is akin to me reading books from time to time on-line, but ultimately loving the feel of turning the pages of a real,honest to goodness book – I feel like a documentation panel should be something the learner can experience more directly, with all of the senses.

I was also thinking about the feasibility of creating documentation panels within pinterest.  Since you can pin any photo, you could take photos of any artifacts and texts that you’d want to add to the panel, then pin those, along with actual photos.  I was going to do exactly that, tonight, but I’m having trouble with the tech side of things.  Which is a reminder of why it’s important to have multiple ways to document, including some that don’t involve internet connectivity, electricity, etc.!  Now I have a project for tomorrow – create a pinterest documentation panel.  And then figure out how difficult it would be to print the pinterest board, as large-scale as possible…

The problem with writing late at night, is that it’s very difficult to sleep, once all of these ideas start running around my head!

I would love to hear about your documentation panels – what materials do you use?  How are your children involved in the creation of documentation panels?  Where do you display the panels?  What works for you and what is difficult?


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