Friday, August 14, 2015

5 Reasons You Should Get Rid of Your Classroom Thesauruses & Why You Should Use Picture Thesauruses Instead!!

Several years ago I was teaching grade one and then moved onto teaching grade 4 the year after - a huge jump! One thing that really stuck with me is how:
1. The elementary grades had limited resources to help students write descriptively (i.e., a thesaurus isn't exactly a kid friendly tool).
2. It was NO DIFFERENT in the higher grades. Students would often select synonyms at random when asked to be more descriptive! A regular thesaurus was just not cutting it.

This is when I KNEW I had to create a resource to help my students... something that would serve as the "Angry Birds" of thesauruses. Like Angry Birds, it had to be something young kids could use (and enjoy) just as effectively as older students.

After hearing from all the wonderful teachers who have left me feedback on my Picture Thesauruses (click HERE to read all the feedback comments), I am delighted to know that teachers spanning from the elementary grades to the upper grades...and even up to high school... are enjoying the books.  If this is your first time hearing about the books... or you're on the fence about grabbing a set for your class, this post serves to show you 5 REASONS why I think you should get rid of your classroom library of thesauruses and use Picture Thesauruses instead! Oh, and I have a couple of FREE books for you to try out... keep reading... the links are at the end!

You can also ENTER TO WIN a Picture Thesaurus Bundle AND a $100 TpT Gift Card!!
{You'll see more details on this at the end of this post!}

Here is an example of a page in a Picture Thesaurus booklet, just to give you an idea of how they are organized. 

A complete booklet would look something like this:

Now for WHY I got rid of my classroom thesauruses and created Picture Thesauruses to use with my students instead:

My Picture Thesauruses get used A LOT in my class... so I also created some quick reference cards that students can use when a booklet is in use. Once students have used the booklets several times, and have a sense of the word they're looking for (but just need to double check spelling etc.), the reference cards are the perfect tool.

You can also choose to use them in an interactive notebook! Click the image below to learn more!

If you're thinking "How will I organize the Picture Thesauruses in my classroom?", I have some ideas for you!
I put my cards on magnetic hooks on the black board:

But you could also put them on a cork board with push-pins:
(Thanks Amy Mezni from Teaching Ideas 4U for snapping a pic of how you organize them in your class!!).

She sent me a message the other day saying she had room for a few more books on the bottom and that I should get on it and add some MORE in my store!! Well, little did she know, I was in the middle of adding "SAID" to my store just as she sent me the message! Ask and you shall receive, haha! 

Another option is to put the books on a peg board. 
I organize my books by senses (the 5 senses + emotions). 

For the longest time I just had them on the ledge of my blackboard. Whatever works!!

NOW... if you want to WIN A SET for your class ENTER the raffle below!!

To enter all you have to do is download the FREEBIES listed below and leave a lil love in the feedback section for each book in my store! 

It really is a win-win... you were going to download these freebies anyway!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
WAIT...that's not all I'm giving away!! My friends at the Lesson Deli and I are ALSO giving away a $100 TpT GIFT CARD!! This is happening on our collaborative blog, here:

But before you make your way there, be sure to hop on to the next blog in our hop!


  1. I am so excited to use these word cards this year! You should see how much interest they get from both teachers and students!


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