Wall of Math Success

Kids love displaying their work in our classroom.

A few posts ago I wrote about "The Fridge", an area of my classroom dedicated to student work. It's always been there, but this past year I finally gave it a name. It's always been a little sad to me that most of my students would rather hang their work than bring it home. On the other hand it's awesome to hang their hard work in our class for all to see. 

Students feel successful on bad days
The best part about hanging student work is that it is a constant reminder to the students that success can happen for them, especially on bad days. I always get an eye roll after pointing to the board on a day a student is slacking, but deep down [I tell myself] they love it. I definitely love the constant, tangible, point-to-able evidence that a student is able to work hard and achieve, especially on days when that student might not be feeling it. 

Stop Forcin' it
My students always volunteer their work for the fridge; I never force them to put it there. I do consider an "I don't care" as them volunteering to hang their work. Oh teenagers. It's all on magnets so that students can take down their work if they ever want to bring it home. They rarely do, but I like this non-permanent hanging method a little better than staples or even tape. I also like the cute magnets I got at Target:) And there's less cleanup. Plus, I think this board was an old chalk board or something, which is why it's conveniently magnetized. 

So what's on the wall?
So what ended up on our board by the end of the year? Well, a lot is buried deep behind other papers (I don't like taking things down), but on the top are a few recognizable things. One of my favorite activities my Algebra 2 students did this year was one from All Things Algebra called Radical Equations Relay Races. All of my students were motivated to complete this activity, which is definitely my measure of an activity's success! A few other things include my Quadratics Chain Activity, which was also a hit this year. My hardest-to-motivate student earned all 10 chains, which blew me away. Of course I let him know how I felt. It was so super awesome to be able to point to his chain (his is the bottom one in the photo) on days he didn't feel like working.  Score one for the teacher:) This particular student came part-way through the year and really struggled. By the end of the year he was earning Bs. It was one of the better turn-arounds I've seen.

There are also some warmups, a discriminant sorting activity and a compound interest chain activity from my Consumer Math class. I see more chain activities in my students' futures. They really work well to motivate students.

What's next?
I would have taken a photo of the board as it looked after I took down all of the papers, but that would have been too depressing. It's totally bare waiting for more student work. And I'm excited to fill it!

Let's collaborate
And if you'd like more secondary Math ideas, why not follow the Math Grades 7-12 Pinterest board? It's chock full of ideas to bring directly to our classrooms or pin for later reference. If you'd like to be a board collaborator, just comment below with your Pinterest name and I'll add you:)


  1. In my district, we have to justify correlation to common core by posting the following with student work:
    Common core standard
    Objective of lesson
    Description of assessment
    Grading rubric
    I love the fridge idea but I'm going to have to figure out how to manage t h e paperwork that must also be posted.

    1. Yes, we have to post mastery objectives too. This is a different wall in my classroom where students can post their work. We also have a word wall area. Basically, my walls are covered!