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Bump It Up Boards

Increase student achievement by using bump it up boards as an effective instructional strategy from the 2 Peas and a Dog blog.

I have been hard at work creating Bump It Up boards to support the 4 R’s – Retell, Relate, Reflect, Review. I use the 4 R’s reading response method frequently in my classroom, and it is featured in a few of my genre-based book reports.  

This strategy helps students self-monitor their work to ensure it meets the guidelines. They can compare their work to a known levelled sample and see how they can improve their work. 

I have seen a lot of Bump It Up boards on real cork boards in classrooms, but if you create it on a display board, you can move it around your classroom or take it with you on rotary. You could also share your board with another teacher who is working on the same concept. Using a display board would be great for a split/combined grades class, as each grade could have its own reference board. 

Increase student achievement by using bump it up boards as an effective instructional strategy from the 2 Peas and a Dog blog.
The completed Bump It Up Board

Bump It Up Boards

The Process:

  1. I collected many samples of student work on the 4 Rs.
  2. Students worked in groups to read the responses and Level each response based on their previous knowledge of what makes a good Retell, Relate, Reflect and Review.
  3. A student in each group was the recorder and wrote down all of their ideas on what made the piece a Level 3 (B) or a Level 4 (A).
  4. We had a class discussion and compared our answers to ensure consistency among our expectations for Level 3 and 4 work.
  5. I typed up their thinking under the appropriate categories, which has now become our Success Criteria.
  6. I typed up the assignment expectations and formatted the student work samples to fit onto the display board.
  7. All Level 3 work and labels were colour-coded Orange, and Level 4 work and labels were colour-coded Green to help students easily find the Level they wish to read.
  8. All were assembled on the display board and then glued down.

Other Ideas:

Increase student achievement by using bump it up boards as an effective instructional strategy from the 2 Peas and a Dog blog.

The music teacher at my school created a Bump It Board using QR Codes. The teacher recorded Level 1-4 sheet music performances of the instruments the students play. The teacher uploaded each recording to her classroom website for the students to reference and listen to. Now students can hear the difference between a Level 2 (C) performance and a Level 3 (B) performance. 

How do the students access the website? They scan the QR code with their smartphones and save the link to their instrument! 

Start using bump it up boards in your classroom. Find the Bump It Up Board Headers on Teachers Pay Teachers USD and Shopify CAD


I would love to see how you use Bump It Up boards in your classroom. Connect with me on social media to share your thoughts.

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8 thoughts on “Bump It Up Boards”

  1. Great idea! I would love to have the time to do this. I think I just might take the idea of using tri-fold boards and make one of these for extended response questions for reading. My students are still struggling with what it takes to move from a level 3 to a level 4. This strategy would be a great resource to make and save.

  2. I've never seen a Bump It Up board, but I think it's a great idea! I love that I could direct a student to the board instead of repeating myself 100 times! Great suggestion!

  3. This is a really great idea! This is the first time I have every heard of this and I want to use this sometime in the future. I have a few question though:
    1) Do you only chart level 3 and 4 work when you make it? I noticed that the music instructor included 1 and 2 but the other examples did not.
    2) What if you feel the group of students did not produce material worthy (lets just say of level 4) when you create it? Do you just let the students decide with what you have or do you do something different?
    3) Do you make a new Bump board per year/class or do you keep the same one to use?

  4. You can include Levels 1-4 but I ran out of room! I save my bump it up board ideas from year to year and then use them as a guide to make new ones with my new classes. If students are not achieving Level 3 or 4 then I have them refer to the bump it up board and figure out what their work was missing. Great questions!

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