Lesson Plan

Taking the KWL chart paper digital

Use Padlet to create an interactive KWL chart that exteands well beyond the lesson
Chris C.
Technology coordinator
Heathcote School
Scarsdale, United States
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My Grades K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
My Subjects English Language Arts, Social Studies

Students will be able to... build a traditional KWL chart using the free, online tool, Padlet. This works in both 1:1 environments as well as lab setups.


I have used Padlet this way in grades 3-5 but it can easily be adapted for other grades as well.

I have used it with 3rd graders in a computer lab setting when we were going to watch a video on the solar system.  It was a 4 session lesson/project

  • First lesson was a Padlet introduction.
  • Second lesson was the K and W of our Solar System Padlet. 
  • Third lesson was watching the Solar System video and using the Padlet to add the L
  • Fourth lesson was reflecting on the experience

I have used in collaborating with teachers and 5th graders in a 1:1 Chromebook environment for a Skype session with the NASA Digital Learning  Network (

  • First lesson was a Padlet introduction
  • Second lesson was the K and W of our Rocketry Padlet for our NASA DLN video chat
  • 3 Padlets were created, one for each 5th grade class, in the same style
  • Students then had independent time in class, on their Chromebooks to add the the Padlet
  • ​Third lesson was live video chat with NASA DLN educator and using the Padlet to add the L
  • 5th grade teachers then used the Padlet afterward for further in-class lessons, reflections, and a culminating activity of their Rocketry unit

Padlet as a KWL chart if a great way to introduce a digital tool in a familiar framework as well as to extend the benefits of a KWL chart beyond just a single lesson.


English Language Arts
Social Studies
World Languages
English Language Learning
Health & Wellness
Grades 3 – 12
All Notes
Teacher Notes
Student Notes

1 Hook

Free, Free to try, Paid

Create a Padlet to use a a demo 

Mini lesson:

  • Show students how to access it (Padlet provides many ways including short URLs, QR codes, etc)
  • Show students how to add content



Student Instructions

Students log in to their own devices and access the demo Padlet

Students add a few simple posts to practice use

For older students they can also practice adding links to websites, pictures, videos, etc

2 Direct Instruction

Free, Free to try, Paid
Free, Paid

Once the students have the experienced Padlet choose a lesson to use with with a KWL chart. Some possibilities are:

Live talk with an author/expert/etc via Skype/Hangout/etc

Watching an informational video on YouTube

Create a new Padlet for the live KWL chart

Student Instructions

Students begin to populate the new Padlet with the K and W relevant to the person or petopicpe that will be discussed live.

3 Independent Practice

Free, Free to try, Paid
Free, Paid

Set up the live lesson with the real-time Skype/Hangout or watching of instructional video.

  • At this point the K and W of the Padlet should be filled in.
  • The benefit of the Padlet is the K and W can be filled in beyond just classroom time. Especially if you are in a 1:1 setting, students can repeatedly refer back to it to add or edit K and W info before the live session

During the live session students add the L and use the K and W to ask questions.

Student Instructions

Students participate in the live lesson using the Padlet as a reference point as well as adding the new things they learn under the L section.

4 Wrap Up

Free, Free to try, Paid

After the live lesson the class can refer back to the Padlet to reflect on the experience, the new information acquired, and how they might proceed in the next phase of the lesson or unit.


The Padlet should be open and accessible beyond the live event (interview or video) so students can use it to reflect and continue to build upon.