I gave each group the sheet to the right as well as one challenge card (click on the button to access both). With a partner, they had to construct, with only Legos, a solution to the problem/challenge they were given. The idea was to have the students think deeper about what the problem was that the Pilgrims were facing and how they could come up with a solution using limited materials (as the Pilgrims had to). When they were done with their construction, I asked them to write a brief paragraph about their design.
A short week before the holidays will guarantee that kids will be wired...so why not capture their desire to communicate and channel it into a fun activity with Legos?! I had recently come across these Lego Challenge Cards from The Fickle Giraffe and thought it would be a great idea to modify for a Thanksgiving theme. The Pilgrims faced many challenges when they settled in Plymouth Colony after all!
I started off by showing them this video to give them a bit of background knowledge. If they paid attention enough, they could also use some of the ideas in the video for their challenge.
This was a fun challenge for me to watch, as working in pairs creating a solution to a problem was more difficult than I anticipated. I am not sure if it was due to the short week and upcoming break, or if they truly had a difficult time discussing their ideas, coming to a common solution, and then actually building a prototype. Either way, it was a good brain workout for them! They came up with some great visual solutions and were able to explain (either in written or verbal words) why they constructed what they did. If I were to take this idea a step further (time permitting), I would love to take the students outside and ask them to construct actual representations of their ideas using resources from nature. This would give some great hands-on experience (and a little more realism) for what the Pilgrims had to go through.
What is a Book Spin?
After completing an activity with your students, we would love to see what you have done! Share your book spin implementation on Twitter using the hashtag #NovBookSpin.
November Book Spin Reading Selection - A Plump and Perky Turkey
Below is the recording of the selected book for November's Book Spin, "A Plump and Perky Turkey" by Teresa Bateman.
If you are unable to view the video below, please click here.
Curriculum "Spins" on A Plump and Perky Turkey
In the presentation below, you will be able to view many different curriculum spins you may use in your classroom that use the book "A Plump and Perky Turkey" as a starting conversation point. Feel free to use one, two, three, or all of them with your students!
If you are unable to view the presentation below, please click here.
Last month, I shared a Halloween-themed QR code listening center resource. Based on popular demand and request, I will be sharing a QR code listening center activity each month. These QR code activities are not limited to just use in a listening center though - it is best used when the materials fit within your classroom needs. For some it may be a listening center, others it might be something that can be sent home for an evening listening activity, while others may even find other ways that they would best complement instruction and student learning.
Based on teacher feedback from the introductory Halloween QR code listening center resource, I have started adding Accelerated Reader (AR) levels as well as Lexile levels (when available for books). This can be especially helpful in listening centers if students are following along with the book so that they can select appropriate books for their reading level.
Below, I have provided a link to download a file I created with approximately 40 "book cards" with QR codes on them (all related around the theme of Thanksgiving). All you need to do is print out the cards and download a free QR Code Reader app on the iPad (I personally use QR Reader on my iPad). Then the students just need to scan the code and they can listen to the story. The cards have the title, author, picture of the book, book level (when available) and the QR code on them.
You may see this image when you try to download the file.
No worries! Just go ahead and click the Download button. It is just a big file and Google Drive cannot provide a preview for the document. There are many book resources after all!
Please leave any comments below on how you use these in your classroom or any other ways you use QR codes in the classroom. I always love hearing new ideas!
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