I'm back from my happy place. It was very, very happy as usual. Good news is that I'll be going back over Memorial Day weekend, so I'm not even that sad about having to come home! Unbelievably, I can go in next week and start getting my room ready already. How did that happen?? I still have a few more weeks before we officially go back, but man this summer surely zoomed by!
So, on to a cool idea I'm really hoping will work well when I'm back into the teaching groove. This was an activity from my Common Core training last month. I don't think the actual activity was meant for us to do with the kids, it was more of a way to get us up and moving around the room as participants of the training, but I really liked the activity and think it could work with the kids.
It's sort of like a jigsaw cooperative learning method. First, our table group was presented with a piece of chart paper and four separate problem solving activities on small sheets of paper. For the purposes of this training, they were from various grade levels. We had to fold the chart paper into fourths and then glue each one of the four smaller sheets onto it.
Then, we individually worked on the problem that we ended up sitting in front of. I got a fourth grade fraction problem! (bad seat choice that day...)
The next part scared the bejezzus out of me when I pictured it happening in my actual classroom. We RIPPED the paper apart! I'm sorry, but scissors will be used when I do this in my room. Can you imagine them trying to rip this into four equal parts? Raise your hand if you can see it looking more like confetti when they were done ripping. Yeah, me too.
Then the fun part. We had to walk around the room with our piece of the paper and find the other members who also had the same problem. Then we compared our answers and looked at the different problem solving methods we used. You can see in my page above, I had the wrong answer! *hanging my head in shame* BUT the cool thing about me having the wrong answer, was that another member with the wrong answer tried to explain why her answer was correct -but in the middle of her explanation, she realized her mistake. Then someone who had the right answer explained to us both how she came about it and it was a cool pictorial representation that made it so easy! That's right about when I fell in love with this strategy.
I don't know if I'd try this in the first couple of weeks of school, but after you have your routines and structures in place, I think this strategy could really become a staple. This might also be another great way to use task cards. My brain is spinning with different activities that I might be able to use with this strategy. I'll keep you posted :)
And in other news, my ELA Common Core Assessment Pack is done! Feel free to check it out here if you're interested.
I'll be in and out of my classroom next week, so get ready for some set up pictures! Those are always my favorite...
See you soon, my friends!