So, being a week without a computer really stinks!!! On the bright side, not having a computer openened up a lot of free time, so I took my first trip to Ikea. Yep, you heard me right, my FIRST trip. No, I don't live under a rock....we just don't happen to have one near where we live. I've heard y'all talk about all the great things you get there that I just had to go see for myself. You're right, pretty nice. I did manage to control myself, however, and only spent about $6. Aren't you proud of me!!!
Onto the topic of word walls. I've always had a word wall in my classroom, as I'm sure most of you have, but I've struggled with where to put it and the best ways to display the words. In the past, I've usually had it up high either on a bulletin board or under my alphabet line. I know that some people say that the word wall should be interactive, and I did try that once. Due to space issues, however, I had to make a pocket for each letter and put the word cards in those. I didn't like the fact that if the kids needed a word they had to dig through all the other words to get the one they needed, so back up high the words went. This year, my plan is to use all of the space under my white board/SMARTboard for my word wall. I thought about putting the words on velcro, but that's a LOT of velcro (and money). Since I don't care really where my kids sit when they work (as long as they're working), I think if I just put the words on their eye level, they can go up to the word wall and write on the floor with a clipboard if they need to.
One thing that the Primary Pizzazz book mentioned that was interesting to me was switching the organization of the word wall throughout the year. Now, I don't know about you, but I've always had the words displayed in ABC order. But, the book said to consider starting the year organizing the words on your word wall by categories. For example, "Names", "School words", etc. Then, later, switching to an ABC order wall. Have any of you out there tried this setup? How did it work for you?
I was also wondering about using color on my word wall. I've heard it helps the kids see the words better, with each word backed in a different color. Any input? Whadd'ya think?
I would love to hear from you guys about how you organize and set up your word walls. Where are they? Are they interactive? Do you use colors to highlight the words? What words do you use?
On a completely different note - have you seen the AWESOME pics from Schoolgirl Style on Facebook? Her classroom designs are always amazing (and I soooo would love for my classroom to look like that), and she is teaming up with Creative Teaching Press this year. She has pics of classroom design ideas using some of CTP's most popular products. My favorite - dots on turquoise! I've already bought a bunch of the products for my classroom next year. If you're not a fan of Schoolgirl Style on Facebook, you need to get over there right now and check out her pics. Trust me, you'll be inspired!
Schoolgirl Style on Facebook