- Keeping a Portfolio: Keep a portfolio of students’ progress in mathematics and English.
- Exit Slips: At the end of each day, week, or completion of a lesson have students complete an exit slip.
- Agree or Disagree: After the teacher or a student has shared a thought or idea, ask students to give a thumbs up if they agree with what was said or to form a C with their hands to challenge what was said.
- Four Corners: Label each corner of the room with a different option such as strongly agree, agree, disagree, strongly disagree, or A, B, C, and D. Read a question or statement and have students go to the corner of the room that represents their answer. After students reach their corner, allow them a minute or two to discuss their choice in their group. Then, choose a representative from each group to explain or defend that group’s answer.
- Student Self-Evaluation: Use self-evaluation to help students reflect on and assess their own progress.
Curriculum Centered Activities
Build a Story: Scatter random nouns, verbs, and adjectives around the room. Students have to hunt for two of each. Use different color paper for each part of speech when doing this activity with younger students and use a single color paper for all parts of speech when doing this activity with older students. Once students have found each part of speech, they must create a story using the words they collected. Each story must have a main character, setting, plot, and structure.
Using Music to Inspire Writing: Play a song and have students describe what they are hearing. Discuss how what they hear connects to what you are learning about. Students will then use their drawings to write a story using elements they heard in the music.
Hopscotch Math: Using a piece of chalk, draw a hopscotch grid on the pavement mimicking a calculator layout. Ask students to form a line and one by one, give them a simple operation (e.g. 2+3, 5–0). Students should take turns hopping on each element of the equation in the correct order, landing finally on the answer. In another game, you can call out a number and ask students to hop on any equation that equals to that number.
Sparkle: The object of the game is to practice multiplication facts. Students stand in a circle, and for each round I chose a different number to skip-count by. Students will skip-count until they reach a “magic number,” which is simply a multiple of the number students are counting by. The student that says the end number in the sequence sits down. If a student takes too long to answer, uses their fingers to count, or gets the multiplication fact wrong, they’re out.
Wax Museum: Each student will pick a famous person from history and research five facts about them. Students will dress up as their character for the Wax Museum. They will stand frozen until someone attending the Wax Museum taps then to unfreeze them. The student will then say five facts about their character in the first person and say “Who am I?” The person that tapped them must guess who the student is impersonating. The families of students will be invited to attend the Wax Museum.
Dear Mr. President/Congress: Using coffee-stained paper that resembled vintage paper, students will write a letter to either the President or Congress about an issue we are learning about in class such as slavery, women’s rights, etc.
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