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Tech Tip: How to use “web walls” for collaborative learning

2 min read


Web-based “walls” are an easy way to supercharge learning. Any device with a browser will work.

A web-based wall like Padlet can be used for posting student work, in-process brainstorming, responding to important questions, posting web links and much more. Students get to the wall via any device with a browser. Some web-based walls now also offer mobile versions.

Tools like Padlet quickly get students collaborating and communicating. I’ve  uses a web wall many times as a ‘section summarizer’ in middle-school social studies. Here’s how to start:

  1. Create an account and set up a blank wall.
  2. Share URL with students.
  3. Assign a small reading chunk (print or digital) to small groups.
  4. Students identify important facts/causes/effects or other focus.
  5. Students add content to the web wall via the link (no sign in!).

And that’s how to create a wall with important learning information for in-class student review. Review the completed wall with your students, add relevant info and discuss the most important points to ensure understanding. For instance, when I used a wall to support a lesson on ancient civilization, it truly strengthened students’ understanding of my intended outcomes.  Students can also refer to the wall later as a study guide.

This easy-to-use technique works for grades three and up, across a range of subjects including social studies, foreign language, English and more. So remember, start small, and give the web-based wall a try!

Gene Tognetti is the director of professional development and educational technology coach at Presentation High School in San Jose, Calif. Gene works with ed-tech startups as a board member and mentor. He speaks at conferences on a wide variety of topics, including digital citizenship, effective technology integration into the classroom, and administration’s role in technology planning. He also provides ed-tech training to K-12 schools. Previously, Gene was a junior high-school social studies and language-arts teacher, and K-8 vice principal. He recently concluded his term as vice president of the Silicon Valley Computer Using Educators. More info can be found about Gene at


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