In college, you get to take courses that encompass a variety of topics, often unique ones. In this activity, students create a course that incorporates the content you have taught. This is a higher order thinking activity that is excellent for students looking to be challenged! The attached handout has a number of examples of what this can look like.
Identify a misunderstanding that students may encounter and create a rigorous question stemming from it. Create a scenario where "four friends" each have their own explanation on how to best answer the question. Students then have the opportunity to choose who they agree with. From there, students should break into groups and read a non-fiction text that contains the answer to the question. Students may change groups along the way and discuss their reasoning.
Click on the button below to download the Human Battleship "mission packet letter" that describes the rules of the game. It can be given to students to read before the game begins, but it also outlines how the game works for the teacher.
Click here to watch the Periscope that explains the entire activity.
Using an engaging/contraversial topic, create various "roles" or "points of view" that may represent the topic, with descriptions of the respective lines of thought. Break students into small groups, each representing a different role. Students are led through a series of opening statements, debate, and closing statements that demonstrate student understanding of point of view.
Using a central concept, create 5-7 different higher order thinking, open-ended response questions, each on their own sheet of paper. Take your top 5-7 students and make them "writers." Writers will be responsible for listening, processing, and writing the thoughts down from the "talkers." Talkers are the rest of the students, evenly divided into small groups, who will rotate around to "writers." Writers should remain in their seats, while "talkers" should rotate every 2-3 minutes. Writers are responsible for the flow of discussion.
Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math (STEAM) are touted as the skills for 21st century. Find opportunties at home to enhance the learning that students are doing in school with easy-to-do activities, games, and challenges. These can be adopted to the classroom as well.
Review vocabulary as a school! Using index cards, write the vocabulary word on one side, and the definition on the other. Punch two holes on the top of the cards and tie a string around each card to make it into a necklace. Each morning, every staff member grabs one index card and wears it throughout the day. During appropriate times, students may ask a teacher if they may define the word around the teacher's neck. If the student gets it correct, the teacher signs the student's signature card. The student with the most signatures at the end of the week can earn a prize. The attached document is the actual letter written to my staff at First Ward Elementary (picture is of my principal at First Ward, Tisha Greene).