Word Walls in Senior High? Isn't that for babies?

Recently there has been a lot of talk about the importance of vocabulary instruction in senior high. It had been the forgotten teaching topic as we all focused on concepts and learning activities.

What we must keep in mind is that words are concepts; and, words are concepts loaded with meaning that needs to be remembered through learning activities in order for students to move on to newer concepts and activities. A common memory jolt is to make words memorable, repeatable, and fodder for integrated thought through positioning them all over the classroom. When someone looks at your word walls in senior high and comments, "Eeoouw . . . must be an elementary teacher trying to teach in this senior high classroom. We don't do that in junior/senior high!" then pull out what you've learned from these items below to justify your actions. Remember it's all about doing what's right for the students. Vocabulary development IS important.

Word Walls for Senior High

1. Brown, J. (2007). Building Powerful Word Walls in Every PAISD Classroom. This is a Powerpoint with  word wall principles and photos from elementary, middle, and high school classrooms.

2. Cronsberry, J. (2004). Word Walls: A Support for Literacy in Secondary School Classrooms

3. Grimes, P. (2009). Connecting Adolescents with Texts: Word Walls to Boost Content Comprehension. The Virginia English Bulletin, 59(1), 39-43.

4. Harmon et al. (2009). Interactive Word Walls: More Than Just Reading the Writing on the Walls.  Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy, 52(5), 398-408.

5. An online resource for pre/during/post reading activities to interact with word walls for secondary students:

6. The Word Station: Interactive Word Walls for Learning SAT Words

7. Think Lit Word Walls in Content Areas:

8. YouTube: Word Walls in Secondary Schools
(word sorts, concept maps, relational diagrams, List/Group/Label, Wordle)