Ahoy, Have Anchor Charts Gone A Stray?

Anchor Chart Traits

Very Visual for ESL students. Created by Teachertrap.com.

Anchor Chart Traits
Very Visual for ESL students. Created by Teachertrap.com.

What is the first thing you do when you walk into a room for the first time? Take a visual scan of the room. Gather information around you to get a “feel” for what is going on. As an instructional coach I do the same. Then I sit down and as I listen to a lesson I watch the children and pretend I am also a learner. Just like you are going to cook a meal in someone else’s kitchen you immediately start looking for tools, ingredients etc.

When I am in a classroom I am there as a learner. I want to learn everything I can about the teacher and students. So as I scan the room I think about what tools & “ingredients” I will need to be successful with the teacher’s instructions. The push in education is for “authenticity, therefore, most commercial posters won’t work for this goal. Your students are different every year, standards change, district initiatives change, so should your instructional material.

Anchor Charts are an inexpensive way to reach these objectives. Below are some excellent resources to help create powerful learning to encourage interactive instruction, review

Anchor Chart Basics

(Choice Literacy, by Brenda Powers, http://www.ChoiceLiteracy.com

An anchor chart is a tool to facilitate student self-regulation and support independence. It is visual evidence of the work done by teachers and students — a scaffold that can later be removed as soon as the students have learned the lessons reinforced by the anchor chart.

There are three common types of anchor charts: procedural, process, and strategy. The hallmark of an organized classroom is how well the students follow the classroom routines. Master teachers spend the first few weeks of school teaching routines, and report that this period of instruction is critical to the success of the entire school year.

Procedural anchor charts help reinforce the teaching of the classroom routines. Some examples of procedural anchor charts include how to use the MP3 player at a listening center or how to check out a book from the classroom library. You may find that procedural anchor charts need to stay posted for a longer period of time than other anchor charts.

Process anchor charts remind students of how to work through a process such as how to participate in a peer conference, how to solve a word problem, or how to find a word in the dictionary. In my state as part of the annual assessment, students are required to write a response to a reading passage. Most classrooms have a process anchor chart on the steps for writing a good extended response. Standard-sized copies of process anchor charts are especially useful for students.

Strategy anchor charts support students in developing strategic behaviors such as choosing what to do when encountering an unknown word while reading or how to use the text features of a nonfiction book. Consider sharing standard-sized copies of strategy anchor charts with interventionist who work with your students. It is important that these students hear consistent language.

Scholastic http://www.scholastic.com

Anchor Charts as an Effective Teacher/Student Tool
By Rhonda Stewart

Article covers Do’s & Don’t’s of Anchor Charts…However, don’t stress if you have a different approach. Anything that fosters student learning is “OK”.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s