Movable Word Wall - It Works!

I wanted to share what I did with my word wall this year because I LOVE how it is working out.  
Are you tired of your students crowding around your word wall or running out of space for new words?  Save space and make your word wall interactive by creating a movable word wall!
I teach second, so there are kids who know how to read and spell all the Dolch words through third grade and others who can't read and spell the words on the very first list.  Some of the kids have absolutely no need for a sight word wall while others rely on it...or I use it during writing to try to make them to break some of their bad habits (sed, wus, wat, becus...you get the picture). 

Why use a moveable word wall?

In the past I've just had the letters up with the words underneath.  But all the words don't fit, it takes up a lot of space, and some kids need the harder words while others need the beginning words.  Plus, our principal declared that our word walls need to be interactive, and not just there on the wall.  This way, students actually USE the word wall.  Plus, it allows lots of students to use it at once without becoming a chaotic space.

I saw this post from Kickin' it in Kindergarten this summer and decided I would give it a shot.  I figured this way I could add the new words without having to remove the old ones some kids need.

Here's what mine looks like.
Are you tired of your students crowding around your word wall or running out of space for new words?  Save space and make your word wall interactive by creating a movable word wall!
It has worked perfectly!  Since I teach second, the kids are more than capable of finding the letter and the words they are looking for, even if there are a lot.  I would definitely limit the words if you have younger kids.  My students mostly use the word wall during writing time.  They just come take the ring that they need and bring it to their spot.  Then they replace it when finished.  I have had no problems...expect for maybe a child in each class that wants to "hang out" by the word wall during writing time.  
Are you tired of your students crowding around your word wall or running out of space for new words?  Save space and make your word wall interactive by creating a movable word wall!

Making a movable word wall

I am lucky enough to have a really long white board with three sections.  I also have a Promethean board on another wall, so I really don't need all the white board space.  I decided to designate one for the word wall.  Since it is magnetic, this made it easy to attach my headers and words without damaging anything.  (And without having to figure out how to attach anything to cinder blocks...).  I just used magnetic tape for the back of the letters, put the words for each letter on a ring, and then put the ring on a magnetic tack.
Are you tired of your students crowding around your word wall or running out of space for new words?  Save space and make your word wall interactive by creating a movable word wall!
I had the hardest time finding the magnetic hooks to use though.  All of the ones I found on Amazon or through teaching supply places where very expensive and in small packs.  Plus, it had to have a strong enough magnet.  I think my S, T, and W rings have like 50 words.  Command hooks would probably work fine on a wall, but I didn't want to ruin my whiteboard.
Are you tired of your students crowding around your word wall or running out of space for new words?  Save space and make your word wall interactive by creating a movable word wall!
Note:  This post contains affiliate links.  See my full disclosure policy.

Believe it or not I found these magnetic tacks at Walmart with the stationary.  I can't find them online, but they were in the aisle with pushpins, paperclips, etc.  They came in packs of 10 or 12 and I think they were around $6 each.  (Update:  I'm not sure how strong they are, but there does seem to be a much larger variety of similar items on Amazon now at reasonable prices.)

If you are looking for word wall cards, you can find some in my TpT store.

Has anyone else tried this with their word wall?  I highly recommend it if you need a change!

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Are you tired of your students crowding around your word wall or running out of space for new words?  Save space and make your word wall interactive by creating a movable word wall!
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11 comments

  1. Love this idea. I have my words up with push pins, so technically the kids can take them down, but the rings and magnets seem much more handy and safe. Thanks for the great idea!

    Becky
    Compassionate Teacher

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  2. I love this idea! I will have to tweak it slightly for my needs, but I love it! I'm gonna have to blog about this one so I can remember it!

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  3. This was on my to-do list this summer and I never got around to it - now I really wish I had!!! Okay it is going back on the list - thanks for letting us know that it works well (not just looks good!).

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  4. This looks great! I would love to try this with my class. Did you use all of the Dolch words to make these? Do you have the students generate words to add to the rings? Do you read through the words (at some point in time) so they know what words are available? Thanks for all the information! - Susan

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  5. This is a great idea and I'm loving your blog update! So pretty!
    Erin
    Short and Sassy Teacher

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  6. I was lacking wall space in my classroom and decided to try this, as well. My first graders LOVE it. They're naturals when it comes to borrowing a letter book to spell words during Work on Writing. Yours is SO PRETTY!

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  7. Love this idea! I've struggled with having a meaningful word wall for the past several years. This might be just what we need to make it worthwhile for the students! Now to figure out w place to put it!

    What I Have Learned

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  8. This is a wonderful, interactive word wall! I didn't even know that such strong magnetic push pins existed. This would be great to link up to Tried It Tuesday today! ;)
    ~Holly
    Fourth Grade Flipper

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  9. This is a fabulous idea - especially if you have limited space! Love it!
    -Lisa
    Grade 4 Buzz

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  10. i Love this! In my classroom, the back wall has 26 lockers that would be perfect for my word wall. Each child could have a letter. Thanks for sharing!!

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  11. This is very clever! I love it! And I got those same magnets for my daughter's magnet board in her room! How funny!
    Amanda

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