|Kids wrote down the question, did the work, wrote their answer and then |
the letter of the card where they found the answer.
I was completely unsure how this was going to go over. I expected whining because I was taking away the calculators and making them do work by hand. But I also have a couple kids in the class that like a challenge so I thought they would enjoy it. I was impressed how well it actually went over.
It was really just practice, but since there were so many cards there was an additional challenge involved in finding the cards that they had fun with. The activity was very independent with kids all just moving around on their own working at their own pace. If a kid really couldn't find the answer then they would come to me to check their work and then I'd help them correct their mistake.
On Friday I had a new girl enter the class after a schedule change. I worked with her a little bit and explained what exactly was going on (since we had done it before the other kids didn't need any explanation- they just wanted to get started). At one point I overheard her ask another kid, "Are you actually doing this?" I guess she's used to kids slacking off when there is independent work? But it was great- the kid looks at her and said yeah he was doing it. She then asked why and he just shrugs and carries on with his work. It made me happy. They could have easily pretended to be working but for the most part the kids were actively working. Because of the challenge, and the cards all over and the letters one kid said it was like National Treasure. Gotta love it.
At the end of the period I had two kids beg me to stay for the next period (and miss their english class) to keep working. I told them I wasn't authorizing them missing english, but if they somehow got the ok from their english teacher then they were welcome to come back. I loved how excited they were, but I didn't think they would get the ok to miss class. Low and behold, they showed up about 10 minutes later after finishing tests. What I really enjoyed though was that one of the boys is very strong in math, but the other struggles a lot. The two of them worked SO well together- the one that is stronger was truly explaining what to do and helping the other one. I only caught a little bit of their conversation but he was really doing an awesome job of teaching which I loved.