Word walls are great tools for teaching vocabulary, high-frequency words, and word patterns. It is often a challenge to get students to use these tools, however. “Word Wall Bobs” provide great opportunities for students to have repeated exposure to the words on our word walls and for encouraging students to use them independently.
Some children still struggle, however, to use the word wall as a resource for spelling in their daily writing because they can’t make the transfer from the wall to their papers. If you have students who have difficulty making this transfer, you might want to try using a personal word wall. Here is one that I created for some students this year:
How it works:
1. Photocopy the form above onto 8 1/2” x 11” cardstock.
2. Cut off the right edge. (This makes it the perfect size to use in a standard composition notebook).
3. Tape the lower half into the inside back cover of the student’s notebook.
4. Fold on the line so that the sheet is hidden when the notebook is closed.
5. When they are writing in their writer’s notebooks, encourage them to flip the card up so that it is visible while they write. When students misspell high-frequency words in their daily writing, add or have them add the words to their personal lists.
I have my students create individualized spelling lists that are based on pattern words and on words they misspell in their daily writing, so this tool is also a great way to collect those words for their spelling lists.