Today I used a (pretty plain and in dire need of some design remediation) powerpoint presentation to work through the language of chance with my class. (Any tips on good powerpoint presentations will be greatly appreciated. Thanks!) Anyone who follows me on Twitter will know that I was inordinately excited by this idea and woke this morning unable to think of anything else. In fact, my excitement reached such levels that even I could foresee imminent disappointment.
However... The big guy in the staffroom in the sky had other plans and my presentation worked! For nearly an hour we worked through the language of chance and here's the exciting part: the children were all engaged and laughing the whole time! Yep! All 20 of them! We used the IWB, their books, mini whiteboards and a whole load of silly ideas mixed in with some pretty deep learning. Happy dance!
We followed this lesson with a really casual quiz on life cycles. The children 'competed' (in teams) by writing their answers to multiple choice questions on whiteboards and then 'defending' their choices. As a formative assessment task it worked very well (I kept notes on who was unclear on which concepts) and as a learning task it was even better: the children were engaged, applying their understandings, discussing and debating their answers and - quite comically - hording information to pull out for later questions. Another happy dance! (Who needs the gym when I can get this much exercise just enjoying my job?)
And later we practised our end of year performance piece. *Sigh* Kids. Rap. End of the day. New teacher. 'Nuff said?