Authentic Lessons for 21st Century Learning

Word Splash

K20 Center, Shayna Pond, Shayna Pond | Published: September 22nd, 2020 by K20 Center


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Word Splash

This instructional strategy allows participants to practice correct application of area-specific vocabulary by activating prior knowledge or making predictions. It promotes summarizing skills through generating connecting statements with the terminology.

Word Splash


Students connect important terms by writing one short summary statement of a lesson's content either before or after instruction. This strategy can be used to help students make predictions about new content or to assess student understanding of an already covered topic. As students work to compose statements with the vocabulary, they consider their application of the terms to best summarize content.


  1. Prepare a set of key words to display—five to seven works best—that align with the main ideas of the content being addressed.

  2. Display these words on a board or in some other creative way that ensures that everyone will be able to see the words.

  3. Give students time to gather their thoughts about the displayed words.

  4. Encourage students to think about how the words can fit together to form a meaningful summary of the current content.

  5. Students then write a summary—three to five sentences—that uses the terms correctly to illustrate the gist of the content.

  6. Students share how they created a meaningful summary of the content either through a whole-class discussion or individual written exit tickets.

  7. See a demonstration video at

Cox, J. (n.d.). Classroom Games: How to use word splash. Retrieved from