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What is an Anchor Chart?

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Posters are a staple of any classroom, but anchor charts take simple displays of information to the next level! Exactly what is an anchor chart? Teachers make anchor charts during a lesson to reinforce instruction. When the teacher demonstrates a step or concept during the lesson, she then adds this information to the chart. When the lesson is finished, the anchor chart is displayed in the classroom to “anchor” students’ future thinking! 

Anchor charts help support cognitive development, develop critical thinking skills, facilitate self-regulation and support independent thinking. They help students learn to use resources to be more self-reliant, without the aid of a teacher. For example, if a student has a question about an activity, she can look at her anchor chart to a to find the answer.

Anchor charts also promote cooperation as students and teachers co-create the charts. Not to mention, a child is more likely to follow an anchor chart if he has contributed to its creation. Whether you’re creating reading anchor charts, math anchor charts, or science anchor charts, you can’t go wrong; just remember not to overcrowd your walls! 

Check out these tips to bring anchor charts into your classroom today.

Types of Anchor Charts


  • Procedural anchor charts help reinforce the teaching of classroom routines. Examples: how to check out a book from the classroom library, rules for learning centers.


  • Process anchor charts remind students of how to work through a process such as how to solve a word problem or interact with peers.


  • Strategy anchor charts support students in developing strategic behaviors like what to do when they come across a new word they don’t understand.

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