Polski3's View from Here

Quote of some personal revelence: "Is a dream a lie, that don't come true, or is it something worse?"

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Student activity: Going over work....remember THIS?

Going over work in a class after a break can be a chore. Prior to our Thanksgiving Week off, we had begun our Islam unit. I showed them a video lecture and students were to circle answers on their worksheet ( I find such a "guided" activity works best for seventh graders who are not used to, cannot or will not taking notes from lecture or video activities, etc. The way this works is, the worksheet is passed out prior to viewing the video and students are to quietly read over the questions so they have an idea of what to listen for. [ Where do these video worksheets come from? These worksheets are created by me, the teacher, after watching the video and taking notes.] Each question has three to four answer choices. Some questions have but a single answer, others have multiple answers. Anyhow, as the video is viewed or the lecture is presented, students simply circle or check the answer choice or choices. Later, we go over them and students get some activity to reinforce the data presented in the video or lecture.

Example question: At the time of Muhammad, many Arabs were polytheistic. This means they believed or worshipped _?_. the goddess Polly one god many gods Jehovah

When we go over the video/lecture worksheet, I might randomly call on students to read the question and give the class the answer(s). However, since we did this activity almost two weeks ago, I have made index cards with the question and answer(s) on them, to pass out to students to stand and read aloud to their classmates. This gives most students a chance to get up out of their seats and give an academic verbal response to their classmates. I could also make up a set of cards with just the questions on them, and a set of cards with the answers and students have to pair up in front of the class to read aloud their question and its answer(s).

Next, students will put vocabulary terms (such as polytheism) in the vocabulary section their interactive notebooks,( three column format: vocabulary / definition / illustration ), then create a T - chart using other questions about the Prophet Muhammad and the main tenets of Islam as discussed in this video lecture. And hopefully review and study this data!

Hopefully, this will help start us on the week and get my students minds back to our topic of study.

What do you think? What strategies do you employ to get your students using academic responses and go over work ?

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Up and outta their seats, Vocabulary Activity

I teach junior high. Many of our students cannot, should not be seated all the time. So, get them moving. One strategy I employ is with vocabulary. I have a numbered list of vocabulary terms on the board. Students set up their paper in three column format ( column one: vocabulary terms, column two: definition and column three: an illustration of the vocabulary term). Students copy down the vocabulary list. I then assign each student a number and they are to define that vocabulary term. Then, when I say go, students get up and find other students who were assigned the other vocabulary terms. Students VERBALLY TELL their classmates their vocab. term and its definition, they are not to just trade/exchange notebooks and copy each others respective definitions. The listeners must copy down the word and its definition, which usually required the student to repeat their word and definition several times. Students are encouraged to validate the correctness of the definitions by asking other students for their definitions. My students like this strategy and find that time passes quickly and efficiently on days when we do this activity.

What do you do to get students moving and learning in your classroom? Please share it with us ! Thanks for reading my blog !

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Do you DUDD ?

Do you DUDD? Oh, you're not familiar with this acronym? DUDD is "Department Unification Dress Days". What does this mean? It means that on certain days, all members of a department are encouraged to be dressed in a similar manner. Our history department has the following DUDD's: Tuesdays is "Tie Day," Thursdays is "Hawaiian Shirt Day," and Fridays are "Khaki Slacks Day."
All members of the history department at my school are male and 80% participate in DUDD's on a regular basis.

Does your department or school DUDD ?