1. Plan around what your kids love! Mario, Pokemon? Plan a video game day with different levels tied to "content skills." We did this already this year and students went absolutely GA-GA for it! They had to save Princess Peach and raise the flag. We got temporary tattoos as prizes. Easy and cheap but unforgettable!
2. Take one subject to the EXTREME! Last year we had "Grammar Surgery" that focused on 9 different skills we had worked on throughout the year. The "heavy hitters" for our grade level. We had supplies donated and it hardly cost anything to put together plus I'll have it all ready for this year!
|now tell me that's not going to stick with them forever!|
3. Builds Anticipation - Learning is Fun! Students cannot wait once they see me start to put things together or any sign that says they have to wait. Sometimes it's weeks in advance that I lay clues. They are always dying and so excited to come into class. Can you remember that feeling from school? Even if it is only a couple times year (because hey these do take some planning!) they will remember THOSE experiences all tied to content. Usually mine are planned around reviewing skills not teaching anything new but still so valuable....especially before testing.
|This was from our Awesome Cave Day - which coincides great with Missouri history!|
|Stretchy headbands with touch lights attached - they were on sale at Walmart. We live in a hunting community so headlights borrowed from students was possible as well.|
4. Extend learning to places not thought possible!
After reading the BFG we extended our learning by drinking Frobscottle (which causes farts in the book) and reading articles that discussed why we fart/burp tying in some science. We then had a mission from the CIA to create lunch menus (health) that would have students producing "less gas in class" it sounds hilarious but boy did they take it seriously when working for the CIA.
I had a fingerprint scanner app (that didn't do anything but looked cool) they had to do that before we started work so CIA could keep tabs.
They had to write official letters (writing, parts of a letter) back to the CIA with their specific menu and reasoning for choices based on what they read - talk about deep meaning of a text and APPLYING it to a real world (albeit funny) situation. UNFORGETTABLE!!
My special CIA detectives read nonfiction from @notanothersara about what makes a fart/burp. Took a google forms assessment and had to write a letter back to the CIA with a one week meal plan to reduce gas in class! Might have been gross but they took their job so seriously!!! #setthestagetoengage #iteachtoo #iteach345 #reading #engagement