The National Association for the Education of Young Children states in their “Position Statement on Learning to Read and Write”: “Children learn a lot about reading from the labels, signs, and other kinds of print they see around them. Highly visible print labels on objects, signs, and bulletin boards in classrooms demonstrate the practical uses of written language.”
However, The New York Times reports: ”when kindergartners were taught in a highly decorated classroom, they were more distracted, their gazes more likely to wander off task, and their test scores lower than when they were taught in a room that was comparatively spartan”. Link
To reconcile the differences between these two positions, on my classroom walls are displayed only the work of the children, and learning resources we’ve worked together to create. In the process of creating classroom resources, the children construct their understanding and imbues the resources with authentic meaning.