Monday, 5 January 2015

Winter Wonders Blog Hop

Welcome to one of the stops on the Adventures in Literacy Land Winter Wonders Blog Hop!

This time last year a group of amazing bloggers launched Adventures in Literacy Land as a way to share great tips and advice for teaching all things literacy! I am delighted to be joining them as they start their second year and look forward to being part of the team and sharing more of what I am up to in my classroom with you!

To celebrate their one year anniversary and first birthday, Adventures in Literacy Land have organised a great chance for you to pick up some fantastic freebies and enter an amazing giveaway for a chance to win one of FOUR $25 Barnes and Noble gift cards! 

Make sure you hop all the way through, gather up your freebies and enter that giveaway! Now on to my little gift for you...

My school is in an area where our youngest children often join us with lower than average language development and it is one of out biggest challenges to build their vocabulary and continue that development throughout their years with us. 

Every classroom (and I'm sure yours too!) has a huge focus on vocabulary displays to support the children. I became bored with one of mine recently and have decided to change it with each season as a way of introducing more ambitious and relevant vocabulary that is likely to support a lot of the writing we will be doing in class.

Here is my Wintery Words display (minus any actual wintery words!):

It already has a lot more on it than this - words I have added (a few at a time), words my class and I have collected together (though class discussions and shared books) and words they have found in reading books or heard at home and have decided to add themselves (I leave post it notes out below the display). Currently there are just nouns and adjectives on display but I plan to do some work on similes and other figurative language soon. 

I encourage them to refer to this display during writing sessions but do have to swap out some of the words every now and then as too many things seem to become 'blustery' or 'glittering' - that's the sign it is time to introduce some new vocabulary! I never discourage the overuse of ambitious vocabulary at this stage in their writing development - even when it is not always used correctly (this does depend on the child and their maturity to some degree) as making and refining choices when it comes to vocabulary comes a little later. I do make sure they have plenty of words to choose from though so I don't go crazy! 

(Click on the images to link to the websites you can download the vocabulary from for free!)

When I taught further up the school I loved exploring idioms with my class - it was always a lot of fun to teach and really improved their writing by making it more interesting for the reader. We don't explicitly teach idioms in the year group I'm in now but I thought I would make a mini wintery idioms pack freebie for you to use in your classroom to help children build their vocabulary in a fun way - click on the picture below to download. I hope you find it useful!

Here is what you will find inside:

I plan to share some more on activities to build vocabulary in the classroom soon so watch this space! In the meantime, I would love to hear from you about displays or activities you find really effective in supporting vocabulary development in your classroom - I'm always looking for new ideas so please comment below!

Your next stop is the lovely Tara over at Looney's Literacy - go pick up your next freebie (and don't forget to enter the giveaway at the end of the hop on Adventures in Literacy Land)!

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. Thanks for share! Word work is always welcomed!

    1. You're welcome - I hope you find it useful!

  2. Love your blog! It is adorable! What part of England are you from? My husband was born in England and his family still lives there. Welcome to our group!
    Hanging Out in First!

  3. I LOVE teaching idioms!! Thank you so much for the freebie :) I am so excited to have discovered your blog.
    The Techie Teacher

  4. I LOVE your blog design! Welcome to Literacy Land!

  5. Welcome to the Literacy Land group. So great to have you aboard!

  6. Love Love Love the winter board! So cute!! Welcome to Literacy Land...we are so happy to have you :)