Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Word Wall Update!

As I walked out of my classroom at the end of last year, I looked around and thought I was content with how everything looked and was organized.  Of course everything was packed up and it looked like this...
But I was happy with my posters, anchor charts, behavior chart, etc.  So I thought that when the time came to set everything back up, I would just put everything back where it belonged and leave everything on the walls alone.

Boy was I wrong.

Sometime during the first week of summer, I decided my room needed an overhaul, like yesterday.  When I took a moment to stop and think about it, most of my posters, borders, and bulletin boards were several years old.  And due to my one wall that is almost completely windows, all of those things were looking a bit faded.  I guess I just hadn't noticed because I had forgotten what they originally looked like.

So I worked like a busy little bee all summer make things and laminating things for my classroom, so that when July came, I would be ready to redecorate my room.

I will do a complete classroom tour soon!  Even though I've been back in school for 2 weeks already, I am still tweaking a few things.  Stay tuned.

So today I'm going to share a little bit of my room and one of my biggest overhauls of the summer.  

My word wall. 
I've been using this word wall, which is actually 2 bulletin boards that sandwich my Promethean Board, for about 5 years.  I knew that I wanted to condense down to just one board and wanted to make sure that it was in a location where all students could see it.  I also wanted something different, in terms of words and header cards, I just couldn't find exactly what I wanted. 

So what do you do when you can't find what you want?  
You make it yourself.
So I did.  

I spent some time this summer and created 2 Word Wall sets that include header cards and editable word cards.  The 2 sets are completely the same except for the background.  One set has a crayon scribble background and the other has a cloud background.

 http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Word-Wall-Header-and-Editable-Word-Cards-Crayon-Scribbles-Pattern-1299304

 http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Word-Wall-Header-and-Editable-Word-Cards-Crayon-Scribbles-Pattern-1299304

Each set comes with large header cards (with beginning sound pictures and without) and medium header cards (with beginning sound pictures and without)

I teach kindergarten, so I decided to use the set with the beginning sound pictures.

I also made editable word cards with different colored borders.  I hate buying a set of words, printing all of them, and then not using some because we don't teach those words.  So I made all the word cards blank and editable so that everyone can type in the words they need and use the font they want.

I also made sure that words beginning with the same letter had different colored borders.


I really love both sets of word wall cards, but I went with the cloud version.


Next came the printing and laminating.  Which was a breeze thanks to my new laminator "hot stuff."  I seriously love that thing.  It's even light enough to carry back and forth from school.


Here he is laminating my new center cards.  Yes I am laminating while sitting on my bedroom floor. Doesn't everybody laminate that way?

I had picked up this awesome coupon organizer from Walmart during my last grocery shopping trip because I thought it would fit my word cards perfectly.  And I love the colors!

 It came with little divider tabs, letters on one side and months on the other.  I could definitely cute these up, but that is so not a priority at the moment.

After cutting everything out, it was time to sort by beginning letter.

I forgot to mention that the font I used was "Miss Kindergarten" by KG Fonts.  I love KG Fonts and they are a free download on TpT for personal use.  I just love this font!

 http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/KG-Miss-Kindergarten-Font-Personal-Use-1310872

I also made some matching digraph mini headers.  

My kids always get so confused when they are looking for a word on the word wall that begins with a digraph.  So I made these little mini headers to go under the letter header, to help remind the kids which 2 letters make the sound.  I'm hoping this will help.  Especially with th words and sh words.

Phew!  There are more w words than any other beginning letter.

I slipped the digraph mini headers down in the letter sections with the words that began with the same letter.  I'll put the digraph headers up when I introduce a word with that digraph.

These cards fit so nicely in my new coupon organizer!!  This makes my OCD very happy!

Here are the word wall header cards I chose.  It's a little difficult to see the cloud pattern but it's so pretty.  In addition to the beginning sound pictures I added to some of the header cards (there is a complete set of header cards without these beginning sound pictures) I also added a short and long beginning sound picture for each vowel.

Header cards - check
Word cards - check

Time to start working on the actual word wall board.

First stop was Hobby Lobby.  I bought some great sparkly ribbon for 50% off.  I actually used the thinner version of the lime green ribbon on the top in the picture.

This was the worst part, and took forever because I had to get it just right.

You can even see my measuring tape pinned to the board on the far right so that I could measure my horizontal ribbon stripes.

So glad that parts over!


Oh this word wall makes my heart happy!!

Where do I even begin...the bright colors, the sparkle, the new chevron border, the perfectly spaced grids, not to mention my new and improved reading center, Book Nook, right in front with my awesome chairs from Target and my new rug from Big Lots.

I purposely changed my word wall to a different board so that I could put up seasonal writing activities on the board in front of my writing center, Write Site.  I also wanted it to still be easily viewed from the students' tables and Write Site.  As an added bonus, it is now in front of Book Nook, so I added some fun pointers so that my kids could practice reading the words while they are at Book Nook.

Another view.  And look!  We added our first popcorn word to our word wall today!

If you've seen my blog before, you may know that I am slightly obsessed with bulletin board letters.  So of course I had to use some of my new ones to label my Word Wall.



It's the little things that make my heart happy.  And this is definitely one of them!

I also used my new Subway Art Rule Charts on my calendar mtg board.  (They are FREE!) I just attached them to some sparkly chevron scrapbook paper.  Right now they are being held up by magnets, the whole board is magnetic, because I'm not positive I'm going to keep them that way.  

Oh and can you see my new schedule cards on the left.  Those make my heart happy too!

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Classroom-Schedule-Cards-1351147 


 Pretty!

 Stay tuned for a classroom tour coming soon...

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