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Tally Charts: Non Fiction Text Features (Student Version)


Standard Resource

Years: K-2, 3-4, 5-6

1 Pages

Product Code: TEAC1429

Resource Type: Classroom Resources

About this teaching resource

Tally Charts are interactive checklists for teachers and students. They provide a list of what success looks like and what actions were taken. In this way they become powerful observational and self-assessment/checking tools.

Create your own Tally Chart with your students when you want to show students what they can do to be successful during a long-term task. Ready-made Tally Charts can be used as guides to support you when you are creating your own, or can be downloaded and printed for immediate use.

Why use a Tally Chart?

Tally Charts help teachers to:

  • Determine what students need to do to be successful
  • Make the learning and actions to take quite visible to students
  • Match Mini-Lessons to each element listed on the Tally Chart
  • Tally when a student shows evidence of taking the listed action
  • See how successful students are at applying the actions

Tally Charts help students to:

  • Know what they can do to be successful
  • Remember the actions to take
  • Keep a record of their own learning by having their own mini tally chart
  • Self-assess how successful they have been at the end of the extended task

How to:

  • Enlarge to A3 for use when modelling
  • Enlarge to A3 for classroom display, so that the learning focus stays visible.
  • Use A4 or A5 versions for students to use as self-assessment/self-check lists
  • Use different colours to tally on different days.


Tally Charts have 3 features -

  • A title that states the learning focus
  • Left column outlines actions or features to being successful at the learning  
  • Right column collects the tallys to indicate use of action or feature.

Further notes:

  • A number of ready-made Tally Charts serve as examples, as well as being ready to use.
  • Blank tally sheets are perfect for you to write in your own title, actions.
  • Many times it is best to add one action at a time as you build toward the big goal.

When to use:

  • Use them at the beginning of a learning unit to begin to introduce the criteria for success
  • Use them during a learning unit to add more elements and to reflect on learning and evidence of learning at various intervals.
  • Use Tally Charts as end of unit assessment records

Hear our podcast 'Reading Like a Writer: Informational Texts'


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