In my first post this school year, when I talked about setting up the classroom, I mentioned how much time I put in to thinking about the arrangement. How can each area be improved? How were the children playing in that area last year? Did it meet their needs?
Over the past few years I collected and expanded the 'loose parts' available for the children to create with but I couldn't figure out, till nearly the end of last year, why they weren't using them as much as I had expected.
It was because I didn't give them enough table surface to create.
This year's new art area is shown in the above picture.
I changed the long table, from last year, with two smaller tables.
One table will hold an art idea that I provide for the children to explore.
The other is left clear for them to use.
In the first three days of school it has been used almost constantly.
Going with my focus on opening the areas, I moved the easel away from the wall and set it between the art area and the next. The shelf that was there is now along the wall.
With one simple move and the children are using the easel far more than they have it the past.