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Interactive Anchor Charts- My New Obsession


Are you obsessed with Anchor Charts? 
I mean you can’t hop on Pinterest without being bombarded with drool-worthy pictures of the various Anchor charts that uber artistic teachers are using to help teach their kiddos a lesson.
I even have a whole pinboard dedicated to ’em!

But… I was always confused about “when” to use them. Sure, they serve as a great visual guide, but I often use student responses to create “anchor charts” for concepts we are learning using my teaching white board. I’ve always found my kiddos to be more responsive and engaged when we worked on a concept together- way more than if I just showed the concept to them.  Also, how I could draw THAT well and keep it THAT organized while I was teaching… ? I feel like Super Women some days, but that just seemed out of my powers! LOL! 
So one afternoon while I was fawning over one of Amy Lemon’s  newest anchor charts (She’s just so darn talented!)  I had an idea! What if I married the anchor chart with student responses???? 
…and the idea of an interactive anchor chart was born!  
Here we are using my central topic and details one. I had in laminated so I can write on it with dry erase marker. The first few times we used this chart, together we came up with the central topic (main idea)

Now, I have the kiddos come up with the main idea and the supporting details.

Can I just tell you… my kiddos LOVE them! 
They allow for every student to have a response or answer. Which, as a teacher, I <3 because it holds each student in my class responsible for their learning and I don’t have to grade a paper to see it! {Double bonus!}

Interactive anchor charts are super easy to make as well! You don’t have to be super artsy or take lots of time to make them! I whipped up this simile one after a poetry lesson when I realized my kiddos just didn’t quite understand this concept.

After a mini-lesson on the concept, I had the kiddos create their own and place them in the correct category. You can see right away that we totally got the “as” part of using similes, but we still needed some help with similes using “like”.

For the next few weeks we are zeroing in on comparing and contrasting similar texts. I whipped up this interactive anchor chart to help students visualize.

Then after reading a fictional story about baseball and a newspaper article about baseball we compared and contrast the two articles (can someone say Common Core?)

Then we went through and discussed each detail. The kiddos were all into it because ALL of their answers were discussed and I could see right away who understood how to find details that are similar and different when comparing two similar texts. I was then able to pull those students for mini-reteaches during small group time.

So, I hope you stock up on some post it notes! These charts are great for exit slips, close reads, small group, and whole group discussion. Amazon has a great deal on bright colored ones! (My fave!)


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Hi, I'm Leigh.

The Applicious Teacher is all about creating hands-on and engaging lessons that align with the standards while still having time for your life. This is your place for ideas, tips, and resources for the REAL teacher!


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