After teaching for 20 or so years (good grief….It simply can’t be!), I have found it can be easy to get stuck in a rut and keep doing the same activities and lessons over and over. I knew a teacher like this long ago. She seemed old and tired. Every day in her classroom was exactly the same. You could predict how her lessons would go as easily as predicting that it will snow in Alaska sometime during the month of January. Yes, indeed….it was dull, boring, monotonous, unvaried, lackluster, mundane, uninspiring….you get the picture.
Anchor charts and task card sets have both been welcome changes in my classroom. Anchor charts I will save for another entry here, but I do have a few pictures from a previous post that kind of give you the idea.
|4 Task Cards from my set of Graphing Points on a Coordinate Plane|
Task card sets are just what they sound like: a set of cards with topic-centered tasks printed on them. I decided to have a go at it and created 3 sets for starters. I also included posters with examples of the topic and corresponding Common Core Standards and “I Can” Statement Posters for reference. The posters are perfect for pasting into student math journals for their own reference—all I had to do was reduce their size and copy.
Originally, my thought was to use the task cards in either a math center or as independent work. Then, I stumbled, with great fortune, upon Teaching With a Mountain View’s blog.In this great blog entry, she gives a great description, step by step, on how to use task cards to play a classroom game of Scoot. Totally new to me, but pretty fun-sounding, so I just had to try it! Fast forward to today….it worked, it was fun, and ALL students were quietly engaged and furiously working. If that isn’t success, I don’t know what is!Using Mountain View’s advice and steps, here is what I did:
|2. Directions for “How to Play Scoot” were posted on the Smartboard. We read, discussed, and clarified the game rules as a class, since it was a completely new game for all of us.|
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