5 Reasons You Should Get Rid of Your Classroom Thesauruses

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!
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!!).
Another option is to put the books on a peg board.
I organize my books by senses (the 5 senses + emotions).
For the medicinereal longest time I just had them on the ledge of my blackboard. Whatever works!!
No matter how you decide to put them up, I guarantee that your kiddos will be spicing up those boring words in no time!


One Response

  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!