Picture Word Inductive Model

Using Pictures to Enhance Literacy Skills
The Picture Word Inductive Model (PWIM) is an
inquiry based language arts strategy that uses
pictures of familiar objects or actions to elicit
words from student’s listening and speaking
The PWIM is designed to teach reading, writing,
and the language system.
A major principle of the model is that students
have the ability to make generalizations that
can help them master the conventions of
Leads students to inquire about words
Adds words to sight vocabulary and writing
Helps students discover phonetic and
structural principles
Helps students use observation and analysis
in their study of reading, writing,
comprehending, and composing
Selecting Pictures
◦ Select pictures and photographs that are
familiar, tangible, concrete and attractive
◦ For older students choose pictures that
also relate to other content areas
◦ The picture can open an area of study or
serve as a focal point for discussion
Old Magazines
Enlarged Photographs
Grades 3-6 should need about 15-20
pictures for the entire school year
Students visually read the picture
“Shake out” the words – generate a list of words
that identify items or actions found in the picture
Teacher records the words as students generate
After generating the word list, begin all
following PWIM lessons by reading and
reviewing the chart together.
With older students try to move the class
toward silent practice and individual reading.
Select certain words for reading or spelling
After reading and reviewing the words,
students will need to classify the words
Some examples of classifications: physical
characteristics, food sources, plurals, words
that begin with the same letter, color words
Older students should become more
articulate about the categories they form and
their attributes
Once students have generated the original
word list, ask them to find other words that
Scan other literature about the topic to locate
new words to add to the chart
Older students need to be given more
responsibility for locating additional words
Take the categories from classifying words
and generate sentences and paragraphs.
In this way, students can understand how
classifying content can help them organize
their ideas into informative prose.
Classify sentences into groups that form the
basis for paragraph development.
Read and review the sentences and
paragraphs generated by the students.
Allow students the opportunity to do
independent writing in their journals and
create new sentences related to the chart.
Use opportunities to create multiple
paragraph works that are related to other
content areas like science or social studies.
“Using an integrated language arts approach
to teaching and learning is not simply
ideological, but is an instructional tool that
saves time and builds learning skills that will
last a lifetime for students.” (Calhoun, 1999)w
The PWIM is an extremely effective tool for
teachers to use as they strive to meet this
goal for all students.
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