Interactive Bulletin Boards and Centers
The skills you should gain from this assignment include:
working in a group (brainstorming, communication and listening skills, time
management, division of labor, responsibility and accountability to a group)
expressing mathematical concepts in a clear, correct way that is appealing to
learning how to give clear, detailed, constructive criticism while critiquing
learning about the TEKS (Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills)
A bulletin board/center can be used to introduce new concepts, to enrich or reinforce
concepts that have already been taught, or to help children make connections between
different ideas. A good bulletin board/center should be teacher-friendly (low cost, low
maintenance, and, if possible, require minimal work). It should be user-friendly, too.
Instructions should be clear and all materials should be available so that children can do
the activity with little or no teacher assistance.
Besides gaining conceptual knowledge, bulletin boards/centers encourage children to
think and work independently and also to develop small group interaction skills. Inquiry-
based learning (aka discovery learning or hands-on learning) is usually part of the goals
for a bulletin board/center.
A bulletin board is a visual display for the corkboards. Your bulletin board needs to
cover some math content in a way that is interactive; in other words, there should be
something for a child to do besides simply look at it. (The corkboards measure 58" by
A center consists of some sort of math activity and is usually performed by small groups
of children at a table set up in the classroom. Your center will need to include a tri-fold
with instructions as well as materials necessary for all your classmates to participate.
If you need some ideas on what to do, the ASU library has most of the currently adopted
textbooks used in the state of Texas and also the periodical Teaching Children
Mathematics. You can find all sorts of activities in these resources. The Internet has lots
of ideas, too. (See the ASU Mathematics Department's homepage for some good math ed
The group should not spend more than $20 for your bulletin board/center. Let me know
if you need scissors, tape, staples, protractors, compasses, etc. Imagine your bulletin
board/center being used in a classroom of children (grades K-8th). Instructions need to
be simple, clear, and grade-level appropriate.
Instructions for the students making a bulletin board or center:
You will be assigned to a group of 3-5 students and will be required to make either a
bulletin board or a center. The bulletin board/center that you create must include the
1) The bulletin board or center. Instructions may be very directed or they may be open-
ended. You may want to pose a question but not give any specific guidelines on how
to answer it. Make sure you include an answer key. Your instructions depend upon
the activity and what you want the child to get out of it. Remember that instructions
should be grade-level appropriate. Include all the materials necessary for your
classmates to participate. Note: Do NOT staple anything to the wall. Do NOT hot
glue anything to the cork. Do NOT cut the large pieces of felt. Do NOT use heavy
tape like the double-sided kind on the metal strips. What goes up must come down
(without resulting damage).
2) A typed teacher talk for the activity completed on the Teacher Talk Template that you
can find where you found this document. Email it to: Jana.Barnard@angelo.edu.
This should include:
the math content
the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) information:
grade level, strand, and objective (see the following site:
www.utdanacenter.org/mathtoolkit. Click on Texas Essential Knowledge and
Skills, under the appropriate grade level click on clean copy, and then scroll to
the grade level(s) you need.
resources used (textbook, periodical, Internet site, etc.)
description of the activity (one or two paragraphs)
extension ideas (how can this bulletin board/center be changed so that it could
be used for more than a few weeks)
supplies needed and construction ideas (Do you have any construction tips
that would make this faster/better/cheaper?)
3) A typed grade-level appropriate activity sheet. This 5-10 question ‘worksheet’ must
require the use of the board. (Run off enough copies for all your classmates and
email it to Ms. Barnard by your due date.)
4) Complete a peer evaluation form (include yourself and your comments).
Instructions for the students critiquing the bulletin board or center:
1) Critique the bulletin board/center. You will be critiquing all the bulletin
boards/centers, except yours. This assignment consists of five positive comments and five
suggestions for improvement. A major part of this assignment is to learn how to give
clear, detailed, constructive criticism. Comments like "it looked like you slapped this
together in 5 minutes" or "this was a sloppy mess" are negative and serve no helpful
purpose to the bulletin board makers. Try to think of positive ways to say how the
bulletin board could be improved and what you liked about it. Also try to give detailed
comments. "It looked fab" is okay, but you need to tell why it looked fab.
2) Complete the activity sheet.
1) For those of you who are critiquing a bulletin board/center, the comments and
completed activity sheet will count as a daily grade.
2) For those who made the bulletin board/center, you will get a daily grade for
completing the peer evaluation form and grading your portion of the critiques and activity
3) Each person will receive a grade on the bulletin board from me using the bulletin
board grading rubric. Each person in the same bulletin board group will receive the same
grade, so the work and expenses should be shared equally.
The members of my group (include phone numbers and email addresses):