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Word Work – Easy Management

Tonight I want to share with you how I run and manage my word work stations for Daily 5.  Over the past few weeks, I’ve had a few teachers at my school stop in my room to ask questions about implementing Daily 5 in their own classroom.  One of the most common questions I’ve received has been: How do you organize everything for word work?

In my classroom, I have 6 word work bins.  This means that only 6 students can choose “Word Work” at a time during a round.  

Instead of having a separate basket or tub of each different word work material (play-dough, crayons, stamps, stencils, etc.) I choose one material to go into all 6 word work bins.  Every 2-3 weeks, I change out the material in the bins so that students have a new way to practice their words. 

This works for me because the only thing a child has to do is grab a bin, find a good-fit spot in the room, and start working.  Changing out the materials every few weeks keeps the word work bins fresh and “new” all year long.  My students are never bored with word work supplies because they are constantly being replaced with something fresh and fun.  For example, next week I will place whiteboards and some fun dry-erase markers into each bin for students to practice their words.  Throughout the year, I’ll change them to things such as stamps, stencils, pipe cleaners, etc. 

This is what my current bins look like inside:

Inside each bin is a word list, a box of crayons, and a ring that has various ways for students to practice their words with their crayons.   So far we have learned how to:

Rainbow Write
Pyramid Write
Shape Write
Pattern Write
You can grab these cute word work cards from Mrs. Mabe at her TpT store for FREE by clicking {HERE}.   She even has blank ones available to make up your own. 🙂
Here is a close-up of my word lists that go into each bin. 
You can see that at the top, my students practice their Trick Words (sight words) for our Fundations spelling program.  At the bottom, they practice word family words.  Last year, my entire list was based on Fundations words, but I felt like my students were missing out on word families.  Especially in first grade, word family study is important to beginning readers.  Once they can read the word family, they can apply this skill to many other words and associate rhyming skills as well.  At the bottom of each word family list is a “blank.”  After practicing the examples, my students make up their own words that go with each word family.  These can be real words or “applesauce” words (nonsense words).  
I hope this gave you an idea of one way to organize your word work materials.  There are many different ways out there.  The important thing is choosing the way that works best for you and your students. 🙂
Happy Learning,

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  1. I love the way you manage your word work!! I have been trying to find a way to manage the materials 🙂 Last year I just had drawers of play-doh, magnets, etc., and they got to choose what to use… Of course you had kids that used the same materials over and over!! And it was a pain getting cleaned quickly and neatly! LOVE THIS IDEA!

    1. Hi Miss Sam! No, I'm sorry. I type them up as we go because I find the words they need more practice with often change from class to class. I wrote this post awhile ago. Now I just type them onto plain paper and stick them into the bins. 🙂

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