Are your students still struggling with some of those spelling words from weeks ago? Are you interested in ways to introduce new vocabulary or encourage more “colorful” writing? With a little bit of planning beforehand, a word wall is not only a great use of bulletin board space, but an excellent learning tool for your students. According to T2T contributor, Sally Olson, “A word wall is a systematically organized collection of words displayed in large letters on a wall or other large display place in the classroom.” There really are no set “rules” for word walls and you will find plenty of variations on the idea. Below, contributors to our T2T mailing list share some of their ideas and opinions. Be sure to check out Sally Olson’s contribution as well, which includes 24 activities for word walls and a word list.
When rote doesn’t work, it’s time to reach into your bag of tricks to make spelling special. Third grade teacher Sally Engle is the inspiration for this list of interesting things to do with spelling words. Many of these exercises can be done at home, with a parent sending a note back that the words were completed.
Self-portraits can go a long way toward covering many subject areas and, at the same time, giving students a creative outlet. Self-portraits are ideal during the first few weeks of school because the work a student does now can be reassigned at the end of the year for comparison. Lessons along the way in shading, shape, technique and perspective will yield a far different result in the second drawing. Your students may be amazed when they compare two self-portraits done months apart!