This week’s ‘TTS Resource in Action’ is the Mini Illuminated Mark Making Board and the accompanying card inserts. The children I observed using them were from Reception and Year 1. Both year groups were able to get different things out of the boards.
Possibilities for EYFS:
Firstly I noticed how the boards are good for hand to eye coordination as putting in the cards requires a little practice. Because of the fun nature of the boards, the children don’t seem to mind this. They are eager to learn how to do it so that they can swap the cards to make new types of marks. You can see Ike giving it a good try in this week’s accompanying video!
Holding pens correctly, writing pressure and the lack of permanence of their writing makes these boards perfect for newbies and those reluctant to write. The lights make it magical and engaging and the children are practising important skills without really realising it. By using a custom made insert to trace his name, Ike is amazed at how it looks on the board once the card is taken away and his own writing is visible on its own, lit up! If that’s not magic, I don’t know what is.
Magic for Year 1:
I watched the Year 1 children use the illuminated boards to practise spelling their tricky words. The magic can be seen when Darcy says, “I love tricky words!” It didn’t matter that she spelled one of them incorrectly a couple of times, because she was able to wipe it away, try again and then correct it once again to get it right. After working with secondary school children, who often tend to just give up when they get it wrong a couple of times, it was brilliant to see that Darcy was willing to keep trying and her teacher says some of that is down to the boards.
Her teacher, Paige Farley has put together some ideas for using the Illuminated Mark Making boards in continuous provision. Why not get yourself some boards and give them a go in your classrooms? See what magic your children can create!
This article was written by our Social Media and Content Manager, Katie Addison, (former Subject Leader of English), in collaboration with Paige Farley, Year 1 teacher at Crich Infant School in Derbyshire.