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3rd Grade Word Walls

Instructor: Shelby Golden
This article focuses on setting up a word wall for your 3rd grade classroom. Find out where and how to set up a word wall. You'll also get information on how this tool can be used in your class.

Where Should My Word Wall Go?

One of the great things about word walls is their adaptability. Where you place your word wall depends entirely on your classroom. It can go on your whiteboard, on a wall or even on the door if space is tight. Just focus on making sure it's easy for your students to see and for you to access when you need to add new words or take old words down.

What Words Do I Choose?

The content of your word wall is customizable as well! However, it's a good idea to start small and with words your students are already familiar with. Many teachers begin their word walls with words that were on the 2nd grade word wall list.

Once you have the foundation of your word wall, you can add additional words based on the needs of your class. You can include commonly used words that your students will need to spell regularly. Sight words are also a great addition to word walls. Terms related to the content your students are studying are also very helpful. You can often draw words directly from textbooks! If you need additional ideas, some school districts publish lists of high frequency words that you can use as inspiration.

However, keep in mind that you can use too many words. Your word wall shouldn't go above 120 words. Don't be shy about removing words that your students no longer need to make room for words that would benefit them more!

How Do I Set These Words Up?

There are several important considerations for actually creating your word wall. You should make sure that the words are printed clearly and neatly so your students can easily read them. Additionally, word wall cards should include definitions and sometimes a graphic to help students grasp the meaning of the word.

How Do I Use the Word Wall?

Word walls provide students with a great reference for spelling and vocabulary words. You can integrate your word wall into classroom activities by having students use them in projects or group discussions. Students can benefit from the terms and definitions provided by word walls across a wide spectrum of subjects, including math, history and science.

This course on literacy instruction in the elementary school can help you get additional ideas for teaching vocabulary and the skills that students need to become literate. Topics covered include identifying and understanding words, language acquisition, strategies for teaching reading, vocabulary development, and instructional approaches, to name a few. The lessons in this chapter are self-paced, so you can use this course at your convenience. Check your understanding of concepts presented in this resource with self-assessment quizzes and chapter exams. You can also check out this lesson on strategies for teaching vocabulary for some fun ideas to use to enhance vocabulary development in your students.

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