word walls to teach reading

Making word walls to teach reading

This blog talks about making word walls to teach reading. Word walls are a great way to read words on the go. It also increases sight word recognition. It also helps to read phonetic words.

What is a word wall?

A word wall is a wall that shows a collection of words. These words are written in big and also colorful fonts. It can be displayed on a classroom wall or also study room of the child. It also is an interactive wall that helps children to read fluently.

Benefits of using word walls

  • It helps children to read words on the go

  • Helps in building phonics

  • It also helps children to remember the spellings

  • It serves as a great model for high frequency words

  • builds vocabulary

Making word walls to teach reading

Word walls can be of different types. You can make the following word walls to teach reading –

1. High frequency word walls These word walls include sight words that occur in texts of children. It is a great way to reinforce reading of sight words.

2. Unit / Chapter word wall This word wall focuses on words of a particular unit being taught in different subjects. You can organize this wall in different ways. The wall can be divided into subject zones the child has to study. it can also be a mixed bag words of the different topics being taught in each subject.

3. Subject word wall You can choose to make word walls according to subjects. For example, you can have a science word wall or a math word wall. You can also make these word walls interactive by using velcro on the word strips. Try putting pictures where possible. For example, you can put signs of operation on the math word wall. These can include the addition sign and so on. For science too, you can put pictures of the different words on the wall.

4. Parts of speech word wall This wall includes all the words that are a part of our speech.

To know more about making word walls to teach reading, check the following post –

 Activity ideas for word walls –

It is important to plan activities around the word walls. This will ensure children will read the words on the word wall. It will also help them know the meaning of the word and how it is spelled. They will also be able to use it in their daily life.

A few word wall activities are as follows –

Guess the drawing –

This a fun word wall activity. Draw pictures of words on the word wall. You can make it on a whiteboard or prepare cards. Now ask the child to match the drawing to the word. Once they match it, ask them to read the word. You can also ask the child to make a sentence with the word they read depending on their level.

Word race –

This game is best played in a group. Firstly, put chits of different letters in a bag. Secondly, ask a child to pick a chit.  The children have to write down all the words starting from that particular letter. After they have finished writing, they read out their list one at a time. The one with the most number of words wins. This word wall game fun and educative.

Rhyme time –

Ask your child to read words that rhyme. To make it more fun, take turns. You can also reward the child who finds the most words that rhymes.

Mystery word –

This is a fun activity where you give clues to the child. These clues will help the child identify the word and read it. For example, you can say, this word begins with the letter A. It has three letters. It is an insect. The child will have to scan the word wall and read the word ant win the round. This can be a group game. It can also be played in pairs. Give the child the chance to give clues too. This will make them feel more involved in the activity. It will also enhance their vocabulary skills.

  • Word chain – This is a great game that will help in teaching reading words on the word wall. Ask you child to read any word on the word wall. For example, the child read APPLE. Now you have to read a word on the word wall that ends with E. For example, you read EAT. The child will now read a word that begins with T. In this way, you keep making a word chain be reading the words with the ending letter.

Tips for building word walls –

Here are a few tips that will help in making word walls to teach reading

  • Firstly, place the words on the wall that students can easily see. That means it should be to their eye level

  • Secondly, use big and bold letters when writing a particular word

  • Thirdly, make the wall attractive by using colored pens, colored papers to write the words on the word wall

  • Fourthly, involve the children in preparing the word wall. You can ask them to write a few words for the word wall. You can also ask them to put up the words on the word wall.

  • Fifth, choose words from their academic content

  • Lastly, plan activities around the word wall. These can include identifying all words that begin with A or any other letter. You can also ask them to group words that rhyme. This will encourage the children to come and read the words on the word wall regularly.

To know more about reading, checkout this blog On Reading for fun

Harshita Malani
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