Creative (and simple!) Anchor Chart Ideas You’ll Love!

Anchor Chart Ideas

Life has been super crazy lately, so I decided to hop on this week and feature one of my colleagues and the great things she is doing in her room- especially her anchor chart ideas! Holly and I have worked together for the past four years. We started out in third grade together and have now taught in second for the past three years.

BUT, before we jump in. Can I ask you to do me a favor?!?! In June I will be posting a blog featuring YOUR management and organization questions. If you have any questions you’d like featured on the blog, click here OR email me at kelly@thesimplyorganizedteacher.com 


Holly and I have always joked about going into business together- I’d be the organizer and she’d be the decorator. She loves to create a warm and welcoming environment in her room…I mean just look at how cozy this couch is!

Classroom library- warm and cozy library area to foster great reading!

She also does an amazing job of making anchor charts. I walk by her room a dozen times a day and I always peek in her room. There have been many a day when I walk by and see an anchor chart she has up in display and then I think “oh duh…I should have totally made an anchor chart for this lesson” and I run back into my room and whip up a chart real quick.

Side story: I have this very vivid memory of being in this undergrad class that I thought was pointless (I can’t remember what class it was)… Anyways, I had to present some project on something and I remember I kept hearing this elusive term “anchor chart” but had no idea what it was…I had speculation that it was a chart that went up on the wall but why an “anchor” chart??? Anyways, I BSed my way through this presentation talking about anchor charts with really no idea of what they exactly were.

So any of you college people reading this that don’t know what an anchor chart is…it’s a chart you make with your students when teaching a lesson to “anchor” their learning. 

Holly, like me, is a part of the Dual Language Program so we teach Math and ELA two times a day…which means that we usually have two anchor charts for each lesson. But Holly does a really good job of making her anchor charts reusable. She even will save some of them from year to year.

Anchor Chart Ideas

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As I’ve talked about on the blog plenty of times before, our campus has been trained by Debbie Diller for the past three years, so a lot of Holly’s anchor charts come from Debbie’s book, Growing Independent Learners.

Multiplication Strategies Anchor Chart- 2nd grade math

This is the most recent chart I have copied from Holly. Simple, to the point, and shows multiple (HAH! See what I did there?!?) strategies for students to use.

Nouns and verbs anchor chart. This is a great review activity at the beginning of the year

Holly did this anchor chart at the beginning of the year and it has stayed up all year. It is a great way to review nouns, verbs, and adjectives (not pictured) at the beginning of second grade. The kids drew a picture of a noun or verb and then wrote a sentence using the appropriate noun or verb.

Writing anchor chart for second grade

Small Moment writing- This is a favorite for our second grade team. The idea is to think of “watermelon stories.” Big things that have happened like a trip, a holiday, or a birthday. Then you find one “seed” or “small moment” within that big item and write specifically about that. It helps narrow down the focus of the story and allow opportunity for more detail.

(I did this one with my kids a little later in the year so it was fall time. We did “pumpkin stories” since pumpkins were all around us!)

AM and PM anchor chart

Holly introduced me to the wonder that is Amy Lemons! This is an anchor chart from Amy’s time unit and it does a GREAT job of depicting how AM and PM work because AM doesn’t always mean “morning” and PM doesn’t always mean “night.”

Procedural Text anchor chart

This is a great example of how Holly creates one anchor chart that can be used over and over. I love how she uses sticky notes for each of her classes and then makes new stickys with her next class.

Informational Text anchor chart

Here is another DD anchor chart on informational text. It does a great job of helping to identify the main idea and details.

clean desk anchor chart

Also, this is amazing and I NEED this in my life!

Final Words

The most important thing to making an anchor chart is allowing the kids to make it with you. I often create the outline of the anchor chart beforehand but leave blanks for kids to help me create the chart. I know where I want the anchor chart to end up but I guide the kids into helping me get there!

Also, here is how Holly stores her anchor charts. She laminates ones she wants to keep from year to year, wraps them up and puts a paperclip with a label on them to help her identify which chart is which.

Anchor Chart storage ideas


This summer I’ll be offering an online ecourse on classroom organization and management! It will be 4 weeks (during July) with weekly online meetups where I share tips about classroom management and organization AND answer YOUR questions! Interested? I’d love to have you join us! Click the box below to sign up for more info.

Classroom Organization ecourse

As always, feel free to contact me with questions and support for your classroom organization needs!

Until next time,

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