Thursday, January 26, 2012

Word Wall Management and Organization

How many people actually have the space for a full-on word wall that takes up an entire wall space? I certainly am not that lucky! While I do have one giant bulletin board in my clasroom, I use it to display student work. I am constantly running out of wall space, ceiling space, hanging space, and just about every other kind of space. While I am so lucky to have a whole wall of windows for all the natural light, they definitely take up room. I've been looking and thinking and playing for years with how to manage my word wall. I've done it countless ways, but I think I've at last found a system I'm ok with. It may not be the best, most beautiful thing ever, but it works, and I'll take that!!

First, I printed up giant 11 x 17 posters with big letters on them. I mounted them on 12 x 18 construction paper, laminated the letters, and cut them out. Then, I mounted velcro strips to the back, and "hung" the word wall letters from the marker trays/ledges of my two white boards. The letters hang down over that tiny amount of wall space underneath the white boards, but don't take up any wall space or bulletin boards now! When we are introducing new words, I just write the new word straight onto the letter poster, and students can see them or come look at them anytime they need to. Students can even take the letter card they need back to their special writing spots or to their desks if they have to, because they can easily be detached/reattached. It's a win-win!
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