Science is a subject that should have students doing hands-on experiments, collaborative inquiry, and lots of fun discussion. There’s a time and place for reading the textbook for foundation building but it should not be the only thing you’re doing. What better way to get students up, working in groups, and laughing than through doing some Science and Dance activities?
Dance can be a fun and freeing way for students communicate their ideas and feelings. I’ve created a short unit for a grade 3 class that is very easy to do because it deals with a topic that every student should know something about: the seasons! Students have to go outside every day, so there’s no reason why they shouldn’t be able to take what they know about how nature changes throughout the year and put it into a movement piece.
I’ve started taking a course at Brock University about teaching the Dance curriculum, and I am so excited! Dance was not part of the Ontario curriculum when I was in school; it was at the discretion of the teacher whether it was taught. I vaguely remember doing line dancing in elementary school at some point and I vividly remember doing the Hustle in grade 7. I still remember the terrible haircut of the guy in the Hustle instructional video (unfortunately I do not remember the Hustle or I would film myself busting a move and post it for your viewing pleasure).
Mean, median, and mode. The three amigos. Those concepts students mix up all the time. Given the right question, mean, median, and mode can go from a task in rote memory and computation to critical thinking and mathematical reasoning. Here are some minds on activities you can do to get students primed and ready for some Data Management:
Being deliberate in your body movement and placement is essential for Drama. No Drama class is quite complete without devoting time to students creating tableaus (a group of motionless actors depicting a scene) because it helps students concentrate on having control of their body position on stage without also worrying about memorizing lines or cues.
However, many students find tableaus boring or have difficulty creating a scene that is interesting and important to them. What’s worse, sometimes when you’re attempting to assess a tableau, you’re not even entirely sure what the tableau scene is supposed to be because students are still developing their craft. My solution? The Mannequin Challenge.
Halloween (my favourite time of year!!) is just around the corner, and many of us are celebrating on the weekend because it falls on an unfortunate Monday this year, so I thought I would share a fun ratio activity. I made this with a grade 6 or 7 (or split) class in mind. I picked numbers that are rather tidy to solve the problems, but you can always make it more or less challenging for your students’ needs by switching some of the numbers.
I’m finishing up the coursework for the first part of Year II Consecutive Teacher Education at Brock University and have been hard at work. I’m hoping to release a Halloween-themed math task soon but we’ll see how much time I have on my hands before I go out on teaching block. In this post I’ve tried to concisely summarize what I think are the most important things to keep in mind for a student centred mathematics classroom. Continue reading
Currently, teacher education and professional development is trying to get away from the traditional methods of teaching that do not facilitate student learning as much as it could have and instead look to other ways of doing things such as project-based learning, gamification, and blended or flipped classrooms.
For those unfamiliar with the term, blended learning is a formal education method where students receive part of their content or instruction in a digital or online format. Put simply, it means adding some form of technology into the classroom to enhance learning.
So continuing in the vein from last week of asking the right questions to students in math, in addition to providing students with parallel tasks so they can pick the level of difficulty best for them, it is important to ensure you are including rich tasks in your classroom as well.