Stop! You, yes you. The one perusing Pinterest and Teachers Pay Teachers for the perfect already-made-resource you can print off and use with your students.
And you! The one flipping through your binders, hanging-files, or digital folders for lesson plans and resources to use again.
You too! Surfing PBS, The History Channel, and other providers of ready-made curricula and lessons.
Stop. And think...
A major goal of learner-centered proficiency based learning is to foster independence in our students. An excellent classroom tool for supporting this work is an anchor chart. Anchor charts are posters that make processes, cues, strategies, and guidelines visible to students. As students are internalizing and learning these, the chart serves as the reference text. Many people already use flow-charts and s.o.p.s in their rooms. Some people have reading and writing charts up. Other people have group work charts, and problem solving charts. All of these fall under the broader category of anchor charts.
Like anything, some anchor charts are stronger than others. Here are some basic tips for creating and using quality charts in your classroom:
When To Make A Chart
How To Use Charts In The Classroom
How To Make A Quality Chart
Before you run off with this idea, a bit of a warning: beware of pinterest! Remember that the point of an achor chart is to support self-regulation and independence in your learners. How pretty or perfect a chart is does not matter! Use the anchor chart examples you find as inspiration. I’ve started a board on pinterest of examples of great charts for various grades and contents to help!
Courtney is the Instructional Coach for KIDS RSU #2 in Maine. She also hosts a podcast about personalized learning, and is available for independent consulting work.
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