Monday Motivation {Word Walls}

I am linking up with my friend Jen Ross over at Teacher By the Beach again this week to talk about Word Walls.

Word Walls can be so many different things and can be very useful. I hear teachers say all the time that kids don't even look at them, so what's the point? I might have actually said that myself a time or two! The thing is, you have to teach students how to USE the word wall and what it's purpose is and it can be a VERY powerful and useful for tool for students.

What I don't recommend doing if you implement a traditional word wall like placing it somewhere up high where you can't easily get to it each week to add your words. I promise your words won't get added if you do this...I sure didn't add mine like I was supposed to when the word wall was out of reach.

I'm ashamed to say that this was one of my first word walls and it's pretty pitiful looking. I have NO idea what possessed me to put the letters on gingerbread men other than the fact that my name is Ginger and I thought it was somehow cute...

It was suggested to me to have strips of paper and add velcro dots so that the words could be easily added each week and reused from year to year. This plan works well if you have your words already planned out before the year begins like our district did for each grade level.

As the years passed, my word walls became more functional and more appealing.

This particular year, I had room for two word walls and I loved it! One was for the traditional word wall words and the other was for content words.

The first word wall, I created with laminated letters and 2 inch wide ribbon. As the week's passed, I would add our weekly no excuse word wall words to that word wall. It was also at a reasonable spot on the wall that I didn't have to climb like a monkey to get to it and add my words!

My other word wall is my ALL TIME favorite! It is a writable word wall for content words. I wish that I had taken a picture of it later in the year when it had words that had been added to it, but it was marvelous! Each content word was written in a different color which made it easier for students to distinguish between and use. Math words ended up taking up the most space and were what students used the most. It definitely served its purpose!

I haven't ended up having a room that enabled me to do the writable word wall again, but I'm hoping to figure out a way to make that happen this year. It was so SO easy!!

I have also done content related word walls.

Excuse the poor quality of the following two pictures.

I would place the words on the board next to the anchor chart or poster. The board's words changed with each unit.

I don't have a picture of this, but I have also done a personal word wall folder for each student. When we would add a word to the wall or when students had a word they wanted to add, they could do so to their own individual folders. This was very effective and it was like they had their own mini dictionaries.

I would love to hear how you use word walls in your classrooms! You should definitely go link up with Jen if you have some fabulous ideas of your own to share!

1 comment:

  1. ooh - I love the writeable word wall! I always try to have content word walls, but I never keep up with those.


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