I will admit to being a high school English teacher with a word wall. Okay three word walls to be precise-one for each level of vocabulary I teach. I have finally realized what elementary teachers have known for years-that putting vocabulary on the walls is an amazing teaching tool!
The advantages of the word wall cannot be understated. I used to try and write the words on my board each day, but I tended to forget to do so about halfway through the week or they would inevitably get erased.
With my word walls I have a permanent reminder of the words of the day, both for me and my students to use. I can remember to include the words in my directions, students can easily access their vocabulary for use in our writing or discussions, and I can quickly quiz my students on the words. Essentially, thanks to the word walls, we are never again at a loss for words.
Here are some additional benefits of word walls:
While some students are stronger visual learners and others auditory learners, they are all still affected by what they see. So essentially, word walls benefit all types of learners.
Word walls work for any grade! As students move up, word walls can take on new forms and purposes.
Instead of guessing how a word is spelled, students can look for it on the wall. Hopefully, over time they will remember how to spell the word on their own.
You can add new information and content to them as you go.
Word walls can be used for various subjects. For instance, word walls in math class can provide visual cues and graphic representations of content, and for science, they can help students make connections between concepts.
I’ve had such success with vocabulary word walls in my own classroom that I’ve decided to do a series of word wall downloads for my readers! Download a word wall for grades 1–5 now.