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Friday, April 30, 2010

Literacy Based Designs in Classroom Furniture

One of the most important things a teacher can do is to develop in children the desire to read. In Kindergarten through second grade students are learning to read. From third grade on they are reading to learn. No matter what grade classroom you teach in, having literacy based designs in classroom furniture can help enhance in students the desire to read.


Having an area of your room dedicated solely to books is important. You can have some special chairs or pillows. Maybe some bean bags or cushions that make the area cozy. But most importantly, you want to display books in a way that makes them easily accessible to the children. As well as accessibility, you want an appealing way of presenting the books.

Having a book display such as the Book Browser by Jonti-Craft allows students to easily see the books from which they can choose. They can look over the books based on their covers and easily read the titles. This is especially important for younger students who still rely mostly on the pictures to tell them if they are interested in a book. The power of choice also adds to children’s desire to read.

In addition to a book display, you can also have a unique and appealing bookcase. There are many bookcases available that are shaped and designed in ways that make them very interesting to children.  
No matter how you choose to display your reading area, choose a way that will draw children into the area. Making reading fun and making choosing a book an adventure will help students develop a love for reading that will last for years to come.

In addition to having an area just for books, any classroom would benefit from having a classroom rug dedicated to promoting literacy. There are many classroom rugs available that display the alphabet in unique ways. This is a perfect way to engage students in reading or spelling games. Students love trying to spell a word by jumping on letters or rolling a ball to a friend who is sitting on a letter. The possibilities with this kind of a classroom rug are many.

For teachers interested in promoting a bilingual literacy in school, there are classroom rugs available that teach both English and Spanish or English and French. Carpets such as the Amigos Bilingual Educational Rug teach English and Spanish words with pictures. This is a great way to promote literacy in the classroom and also a great way to make learning a second language fun.

Whatever you decide to do to promote literacy within your classroom, consider making your classroom furniture part of the plan. A well set-up classroom with areas just for reading and areas that promote reading no matter what the subject is, are appealing to both children and parents. 

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