Sometimes things don’t go according to plan. Other days everything fits together like a puzzle. Last Thursday I had one of those days where everything went better than planned.
The lesson was a review of nouns, verbs and adjectives. We’ve gone over it several times in class, but the kids were still having trouble sorting out which is which. To review I gave them a list of 8 nouns, 8 verbs and 8 adjectives mixed up. For this activity there were several steps:
- Each group (4-5 students) had to sort the nouns, verbs and adjectives into columns. There were a couple of tricky words in there like “is”
- When groups were finished they had to create the two most interesting sentences using only those 24 words. To add a challenge to the task, groups rolled a dice. Whatever number they rolled was multiplied by 2. That number was the number of additional words they could write into their sentences. For example, if a student rolled a 3, then they could write in 6 additional words into their sentences.
- I set a timer for 10 minutes. Groups who finished their sorting the quickest got more time for their sentences.
- When the timer went off I collected all of the sentences. The following hour I had my students vote on their favorite sentences. My class is gamified, so each table group is a team continuously trying to earn points to improve in the overall standings. The winning group received bonus points for their team.
- Then I took the winner from each hour, and they voted on a grand champion. The champion team scored even more points.
The sentences ended up being silly, but the kids were engaged the entire time. They were reviewing the strategy and enjoyed the chance element of the dice roll.
Hopefully I can have more moments like this in class.