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use Do-A-Dot makers to stamp over the first letters of their names. (pictured at top) Rainbow Names: This one is simple, just write the names in large print on a large sheet of paper and have them trace over it with many different colored crayons. Watercolor Names: Using a white crayon write student’s names on a piece of white construction paper. When students paint over the writing with watercolors their names will magically appear. Glue Names: This picture shows a student who has made his name by gluing little squares of paper (pasting pieces) with letters printed on them in the correct order. You could also write student names on a piece of construction paper and use colored glue to trace over it, the end result being a raised name they could touch and feel. Name Books: Using student names and pictures in a class book is a great way to motivate your students to read and recognize letters in their friend’s names. For more examples of how to use student names and pictures visit the Class Books page. Educational Bingo: This awesome game can be played in groups. It is a lot of fun while helping to revise what is learnt in the class. Teacher can ask a question that was taught in the previous class and the answer would be hidden in the bingo puzzle. It is widely used to learn mathematics with fun. The bingo card can contain numbers in columns and they have to solve maths puzzles to find out the answers in the list. For example, teacher can call out “all numbers that are divisible by 4 in a row”. Bleep: Bleep is an interesting memory game in which students are restricted to use certain words during reading comprehension. A list of banned words is first provided to the participating students. This can also be word categories such as colors, names, animals, food and more.Teacher would then give a reading comprehension material containing the relevant words. Each student is asked to read a sentence or paragraph by omitting these words.They have to bleep once they come over a banned word to succeed in the game. Pink Tac Toe: This is a really funny game that can be played with any number of students by grouping them into teams. Teacher would call out a body part followed by a colour. A student from a team is assigned the task of finding an object in the classroom with that particular colour. He/she then needs to touch it with the mentioned body part. If teacher calls out pink toe, he/she has to find out an object with pink colour and touch it with his toe. Sports Gallery: This is an energizer game that raises the acting spirit in students. Teacher will have a list of sports activities with him/her numbered from 1 to 10 or so. He would then randomly call out a student and asks to say a number. Teacher now call out the sports activity that is linked to the particular number in his/her list. The student has to enact the activity for at least 10 seconds. The list can include items such as shooting a jump shot, batting a baseball, serving a tennis ball, juggling a soccer ball and more. Blind Artist: This amazing classroom activity can invoke creativity among students. Students are first paired and are placed in a position such that they don’t face each other. A student will be given a picture and the other student will be given a plain paper and pencil. The student with the picture has to describe what is in the picture without actually telling what it is. The other person has to bring in some creativity and imagination to draw a picture according to his description. Crazy train: This is a funny game which can be played with elementary level students. Students can be grouped into 10 or 12. They are asked to line up and connect among themselves to represent a train. Teacher says start when the train slowly moves forward. He would then give commands during the journey such as fast, slow, move backward, turn left and more. Kids would listen to these commands and make changes in their move. Four Corners: Teacher would randomly choose a student ‘X’ and ask him/her to stand outside the classroom after his/her eyes are tied up. Rest of the class would be divided into four and asked to stand at four corners of the class, say A, B, C and D. Then X will call out an alphabet and those students staying at that corner will be out of the game. The rest of the three groups are again divided into four and asked to stand at four corners. X will again call out an alphabet and that group gets out. This elimination is continued until four students are at four corners and the luckiest student will be the last one standing. Sentence Race: This is a vocabulary review game that can be played among high school students. Teacher would write up vocabulary words in pieces of paper and folds it and keeps in a box. Class would be divided into two groups and the blackboard would also be partitioned into two, each side for a team. A member from a team would come up and picks a piece of paper. He needs to write a meaningful sentence that includes the word specified on the paper on blackboard. Teacher would finally evaluate the sentences and the side with most meaningful sentences will win. Chain spelling: This is an amazing game in which students need to connect two unrelated words by looking at their spelling. Teacher first writes a word on the board. First student is asked to take the last three or four letters of the word and form another word. The next student has to repeat the same and this is continued until a student fails to form a word or misspells it. The game can be made tighter by restricting them to certain category of words. Blindfold conversation: This is a team building activity for a new classroom. First teacher asks everybody to introduce themselves in a few sentences. Once it is done, class would be divided into two teams. A student from a team is called up and his eyes would be tied. A student from the other team is then called and asked to say something. The student who is blinded has to recognize him/her from his voice. If he/she failed to do so, he/she may also ask certain questions related to what was discussed in the introduction to identify the person. Jumping the line: This is an energizer game that would be apt to play at the end of a class which can be used as a revision too. A line is drawn on the class floor and one side of the line will be marked ‘true’ and the other as ‘false’. The students are asked to stand on the line. Teacher would pick a student and says a statement based on what is taught in the class. If the student thinks that it is true, he/she has to jump to the true side or else the false side. If the student’s assessment is wrong, he/she has to go back to his desk. Teacher would continue the game and the last student standing in the line with the most right assessments will be the winner for the day. Missing cards: This is a memory game for any level students that improve their attention to detail. The class is first divided into two. Teacher has a set of cards which denotes different categories. A student from the first team is asked to come up and teacher shows him/her 5 cards for 10 seconds. He/she then shuffles the card and shows only 4 cards next time. The student has to recall his/her memory and identify the missing card. The team with the most number of correct card recalls win. Mime: This is a very popular game in which action words or verbs are revised in a funny manner. The class is first divided into teams. Teacher writes action words such as running, gardening, singing etc in pieces of paper. It is then folded and placed in a bag or box. A student from a team comes and picks a paper and enacts the word. The other team has to guess the word correctly to win a point. Buzz: This is a great game that stimulates concentration and attention to detail in students while still having fun. Teacher can first choose a list such as number 1 to 100, series of words, prime numbers and more according to the knowledge level of the students. The participants will be first informed about the buzz words or numbers in the list, say every odd number, prime number, vowels or so. They have to read the items in the list while replacing the particular number or alphabet as ‘buzz’. Read a Math Book A teacher sits at a desk with two students, helping them read a book. Show your students that reading engaging stories isn’t exclusive to language arts class.There are many age-appropriate math books that effectively explain skills and techniques while providing exercises to help students understand content. For example, the Life of Fred series introduces and teaches essential math skills aligned with most elementary school curricula. The four books, each containing 19 lessons, present content through stories about cats, ice cream and other child-friendly subjects. With full answer keys, the series lends itself to practicing, reviewing or learning entire skills. You can find age- and topic-specific math books through a few Amazon searches or a brief bookstore visit. Create Mnemonic Devices Dedicate time for students to create mnemonic devices — cues such as rhymes and acronyms — to help recall math facts. A popular example is “I need to be 16 years-old to drive a 4×4 pickup truck.” Such cues should be rhymes or quick stories that distill larger chunks of information, always using tangible objects or scenarios to make them memorable. Although you can think of mnemonic devices yourself and share them with students, it’s beneficial to run an activity that gets them to make their own. They’ll likely find it easier to remember ones they create. Deliver a Daily Starter Two students sit at a desk together, completing work in their notebooks. Drop by Scholastic’s Daily Starters page each morning to find entry tickets suited to solo and group work. Content levels range from pre-kindergarten to 8th grade, including problems from subjects other than math. Many teachers either print the questions or project them onto a whiteboard. Aside from entry tickets, there are different ways to use Daily Starters — such as including them in learning stations or wrapping up a lesson with them. Play Prodigy Students sit at a long row of desks, playing Prodigy Game on tablet computers. Try Prodigy — a free game-based learning platform aligned with curricula around the globe — to engage your class while reinforcing lesson content and teaching essential skills. It borrows elements from students’ favourite video games, such as Pokémon, as they compete in math duels against in-game characters. To win, they must answer sets of questions. You can customize these questions to supplement class material, deliver assessments, prepare for tests and more. If you choose to not customize content, Prodigy uses adaptive learning and differentiated instruction principles to adjust problems, addressing each student’s trouble spots. Visit the National Library of Virtual Manipulatives Have students visit the online National Library of Virtual Manipulatives to access activities that involve digital objects such as coins and blocks. Created by Utah State University, the online library aims to engage students. To do so, there are manipulation tasks for students at every grade level. For example, a 6th grade geometry activity involves using geoboards to illustrate area, perimeter and rational number concepts. Ideal for classes with one-to-one device use, the website can also act as a learning station. Run a Round of Initials Add a game-like spin to content reviews by playing Initials Hand a unique sheet to each student that has problems aligned with a common skill or topic. Instead of focusing on their own sheets, students walk around the room to solve questions on their classmates’. Here’s the catch: A student can only complete one question per sheet, signing his or her initials beside the answer. The exercise continues until all questions on each sheet have answers, encouraging students to build trust and teamwork. Play Math Baseball Students sit in math class with their hands raised, ready to answer a question.Divide your class into two teams to play math baseball — an activity that gives you full control of the questions students answer. One team will start “at bat,” scoring runs by choosing questions worth one, two or three bases. You’ll “pitch” the questions, which range in difficulty depending on how many bases they’re worth. If the at-bat team answers incorrectly, the defending team can correctly respond to earn an out. After three outs, switch sides. Play until one team hits 10 runs, or five for a shorter entry or exit ticket. Start a Game of Around the Block Play Around the Block as a minds-on activity, using only a ball to practice almost any math skill. First, compile questions related to a distinct skill. Second, have students stand in a circle. Finally, give one student the ball and read aloud a question from your list. Students must pass the ball clockwise around the circle, and the one who started with it must answer the question before receiving again. If the student incorrectly answers, pass the ball to a classmate for the next question. If the student correctly answers, he or she chooses the next contestant. Play Math Tic-Tac-Toe Two students sit at the same table, each using pencils to write in their workbooks. Pair students to compete against one another while building different math skills in this take on tic-tac-toe. To prepare, divide a sheet into squares — three vertical by three horizontal. Fill these squares with questions that collectively test a range of abilities. The first student to link three Xs or Os — by correctly answering questions — wins. This game can be a learning station, refreshing prerequisite skills in preparation for new content. Modify a Classic Card Game Put a mathematical twist on a traditional card game by having students play this version of War.Students should pair together, with each pair grabbing two decks of cards. Cards have the following values: Ace — 1 Two to 10 — Face value Jack — 11 Queen — 12 King — 13 The rules of the game will depend on the grade you teach and the skills you’re building. Each student will always play two cards at a time, but younger kids must subtract the lower number from the higher. Older students can multiply the numbers, designating a certain suit as having negative integers. Whoever has the highest hand wins all four cards. Share TeacherTube Videos A projector sits on a table in a classroom.Cover core skills by visiting TeacherTube — an education-only version of YouTube. By searching for a specific topic or browsing by category, you can quickly find videos to supplement a lesson or act as a learning station. For example, searching for “middle school algebra” will load a results page containing study guides, specific lessons and exam reviews. Students and parents can also visit TeacherTube on their own time, as some videos explicitly apply to them. Co-ordinate Live Video Don’t limit yourself to pre-recorded videos — straightforward conferencing technology can allow subject matter experts to deliver live lessons to your class. Whether it’s a contact from another school or a seasoned lecturer you reach out to, bringing an expert into your classroom will expose your students to new ideas and can lighten your workload. Add the person on Skype or Google Hangouts, delivering the lesson through the program. Skype even has a list of guest speakers who will voluntarily speak about their topics of expertise. Research the Leaning Tower A shot of the Leaning Tower of Pisa in Tuscony, Italy. Delve into the Leaning Tower of Pisa, one of Italy’s famous landmarks, by running this popular interdisciplinary activity. Although the exercise traditionally spans across subjects through guided research, you can focus on math by requiring students to: Develop an itinerary, complete with a budget, for a trip to PisaCalculate measurements such as the tower’s area and volumeInvestigate the tower’s structure, determining if or when it’ll fallFor younger students, you can divide the activity into distinct exercises and allow them to work in groups. Older students should tackle it as an in-class or take-home project. Party on Pi Day Celebrate Pi Day on March 14 each year by dedicating an entire period, or more, to the mathematical constant. Although specific activities depend on your students, you can start the lesson by giving a historical and conceptual overview of pi — from Archimedes to how modern mathematicians use it. After, delve into exercises. For younger students, get construction paper and choose a colour to represent each digit. Red can be one, blue is two, green can represent three and so on. Their task is to arrange and order the paper to represent as much of pi’s value as possible. For older students, run learning stations that allow them to complete questions, process content and play math games related to pi. For a fun finish, serve students pizza or another kind of pie. Hold a Scavenger Hunt Students sit at a row of computer desks. Send your students on an Internet scavenger hunt, a potential addition to Pi Day fun, allowing them to build research skills while processing new math concepts. The exercise starts by providing a sheet of terms to define or questions to solve, which students can complete by using Google or a list of recommended websites. Regardless, the terms and questions should all fall under an overarching topic. For example, “Find the definition of a negative integer” and “If you multiply a positive integer with a negative integer, will the product be positive or negative? What about multiplying two negative integers together?” More than engaging, educational hunts introduce your students to resources they can regularly refer to. Play One-Metre Dash Start this quick game to build students’ perception and understanding of measurement.Grouping students in small teams, give them metre sticks. They then look around the room for two to four items they think add up to a metre in length. In a few minutes, the groups measure the items and record how close their estimates were. Want more of a challenge? Give them a centimetre-mark to hit instead of a metre. You can then ask them to convert results to micrometres, millimetres and more. Put a Twist on Gym Class Students in with a soccer coach in the background of this picture, whilst a yellow soccer ball sits in the foreground.Fuse math and physical education by delivering ongoing lessons that explain and explore certain motions. It’s time to practice long jumps. But first, students can estimate how far they’ll jump. After, they can see how close they were. Such activities can also supplement lessons about lifting, throwing and other actions — potentially interesting students who don’t normally enjoy gym or math. Run Think-Pair-Share Exercises Launch a think-pair-share exercise to expose students to three lesson-processing experiences in quick succession. As the strategy’s name implies, start by asking students to individually think about a given topic or answer a specific question. Next, pair students together to discuss their results and findings. Finally, have each pair share their ideas with the rest of the class, and open the floor for further discussion. The three parts of this exercise vary in length, giving you flexibility when lesson planning. And because it allows your students to process content individually, in a small group and in a large group, it caters to your classroom’s range of learning and personality types Hold a Game of Jeopardy A teacher stands by his whiteboard, pointing in the foreground to a student who has his hand raised, eager to answer a question or make a comment.Transform this famous game show to focus on your latest skill or unit, preparing students for a quiz or test.Setup involves attaching pockets to a bristol board, dividing them into columns and rows. Each column should focus on a topic, whereas each row should have a point value — 200, 400, 600, 800 and 1,000. A team can ask for a question from any pocket, but other teams can answer first by solving the problem and raising their hands. Once the class answers all questions, the team with the highest point total claims your prize. But each student wins in terms of engagement and practicing peer support. Take on a Challenge from Get The Math Teach your students about how math is used in different careers and real-world situations by visiting Get the Math. The website, aimed at middle and high school students, features videos of young professionals who explain how they use algebra. They then pose job-related questions to two teams of students in the video. Your class can also participate, learning how to apply algebraic concepts in different scenarios. It’s a straightforward way to vary and contextualize your lesson content.

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