Last week I wrote about how I sometimes play hangman and 2 truths and 1 lie to get my students engaged in the day’s lesson (click HERE to read that post). Today I have two other methods to share with you (both are Pinterest inspired).
1) I write the answer to a question on the board and in pairs or small groups and the students come up with 2 or 3 questions that the word or phrase could be an answer to. I love hearing the variety of questions the students come up with, and they like competing with each other to try to think of the specific question I had thought of when I wrote the answer. They also love trying to come up with any questions I had NOT initially thought of (find me a high school student who doesn’t like thinking of things his or her teacher hadn’t, lol). When we have a good variety of questions, I tell them which question was the first one I thought of, I commend them for their correct questions I hadn’t thought of, I correct any questions that are incorrectly aligned with the answer, and we then begin the lesson.
2). This method requires more prep than the others, but once every other week I try to have my students play Bingo to review the material from the day before and foreshadow what they will learn about today. For logistical reasons with the bingo board, I read a definition/identification and they mark their paper on the word they think it corresponds to. We play until someone has “BINGO!”, as a class we make sure the winner’s board is correct, I clarify anything the kids were confused about, and then we start the lesson. Depending on your students, putting them in pairs or groups of 3 could work, especially to make this take a bit less time if you’re on a 45 minute schedule.
With these 4 methods (from both posts), with the ideas in my Back to School items, and with a these 3 strategies (and I have one more post coming with 3 MORE strategies!), I don’t duplicate warm up and recap tactics during an almost 3 week period. This is great for me because it keeps me on my teaching toes, and it’s great for my kids because it helps prevent them from becoming bored, complacent, or taking forever to settle down and get focused when they walk in the room. The more we can do to prevent boredom in the classroom and increase the level of excitement and engagement the more the kids will be inclined to learn.