Using Anchor Charts in the Classroom and Five Chart Ideas

Classrooms are learning spaces for students. Teachers can enhance learning by adding tools that complement lessons and expectations, such as anchor charts in the classroom. After all, the learning process is fluid.

Let’s explore how to use anchor charts in the classroom and five ideas.


What Is a Class Anchor Chart?

An anchor chart is a hanging display resource that catches students’ attention. Anchor charts in the classroom act as a mini-lesson to reinforce current lesson plans, outline behavioral expectations or expand critical thinking skills for pupils.

Anchor chart elements include:

  • Title
  • An objective or concise summary of a previous lesson
  • Subject tag line
  • Summary of subject
  • Tips and reminders
  • Images

For example, a chart to help kindergartners sit quietly when teachers, guests, or their peers are speaking would feature a student sitting. It outlines how to remain respectful and the steps to take if they want to comment.

The most effective charts engage students in new learning or prior learning lessons. They also help them focus and stay on track.

Teachers can use their creativity and design their own, or can purchase anchor charts.

Why Are Class Anchor Charts Important?

Students learn in different ways. However, the education community still believes that students will learn through kinesthetics and auditory or visual clues. Thus, the charts help visual learners and reinforce lessons for the rest.

Plus, the charts highlight summaries of important lessons that teachers want students to remember. After all, repetition is another effective teaching strategy.

Hanging Anchor Charts in Classrooms

Hanging anchor charts in classrooms is easy - use tape, push pins, or clip hangers. Hang them strategically on the wall, whiteboard, or bulletin board. Displaying them on an easel works too. Think of anchor charts as 2D sticky notes.

Other teachers collect several charts and place them in accessible storage bins or graphic organizers for students to explore as part of independent work; just ensure that you laminate them first. This way, a small group can use them during close reading time without damaging the instructional tools.

Creating Anchor Charts for the Classroom

Teachers who create their classroom anchor charts do so to customize them for their students and lessons; this ensures that the chart is grade-level appropriate. Use a butcher, poster, or heavy-duty chart paper. Then, grab markers in different colors.

Start with an outline to organize the contents and establish an objective. Next, come up with the title and headings. The headers expand on the title, so the pupils understand the chart’s subject.

Now, round it out by adding the content. To make the chart pop from the wall, use bright colors and draw pictures, figures, or lines. It’s OK to have fun with the design, so make it student- and kid-friendly by using different fonts.

Teachers who find they can’t create anchor charts ahead of time can also browse catalogs of existing anchor charts for their classrooms.

Five Ideas for Anchor Charts in the Classroom

Teachers know it takes many learning tools to enhance student learning during the school year. For example, worksheets for fractions help student understanding, while a classroom library for middle school ELA students is great for reading comprehension and phonics. In addition, it’s essential to adopt several reading strategies; anchors charts are one more set of beneficial instructional tools.

For example, use a template to create an anchor chart that highlights problem-solving techniques for math or tricks for comprehending story elements more easily.

The following are five classroom anchor charts to spark the idea mill.

1. Classroom Management and Behavior

The behavior lessons students learn in the classroom help them communicate with their peers as they age. Therefore, first grade is the best time to start making behavior expectations clear to students.

A behavior anchor chart can highlight how to demonstrate respect. Then, add the classroom rules.

2. Grammar

Some students struggle with grammar lessons. Help them by concisely outlining the most important rules such as “i” before “e” except after “c”.

Other grammar rules teachers can add to anchor charts include how to construct sentences, conjugate words, and use adverbs.

3. Math

Math remains a scary subject for several students. To make math friendlier, summarize terms, processes, and decision-making rules.

Successful charts break down the foundational rules of math.

4. Science

Like math, science has processes too. So it’s an excellent opportunity to highlight logic and life patterns.

For example, feature the life cycle of animals, people, and food.

5. Nutrition

Students make several food choices daily. It helps to remind them that an apple a day keeps the doctor away; it also keeps the dentist away.

Emphasize healthy foods that power their brains and bodies.


Teachers benefit from reading their classrooms. Anchor charts are one more tool in the belt that reinforces rules and lessons. For more teaching tips and strategies, sign up for our newsletter today!

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