Book Study: Worksheets Don't Grow Dendrites Chapter 4
Tuesday, March 10, 2015
This chapter was all about the importance of games in the classroom and I couldn't agree more. It was interesting to see all the research confirming what many teachers already know and do. I loved using games in the classroom. Any time I could make learning and practicing more fun, I was all about bringing out a game.
Here are just a few ways that I tried to use games in the classroom:
-literacy choices - sight word checkers, sight word fishing, Wordo (like BINGO with sight words), etc.
-math choices - computer games, memory/matching games, card games, 100s chart games, etc.
-Jeopardy style review - mostly for science and social studies. I even bought THESE buzzers to use during test reviews. I would divide the class into groups and they would get to buzz in if they knew the answers to the review questions. They LOVED using the buzzers!
One thing that the chapter mentioned multiple times that I didn't really do in second grade was to have the students develop the content and game questions. I think this strategy would be great for upper ele and definitely middle school and high school. I think my second graders could have done it to some extent and I definitely think it is worth a try.
Games are something I really want to add more of to my religious ed class. I've said this the past few years but have trouble coming up with ideas. A few weeks ago I created a memory game with some of our vocabulary words and definitions on them. The students seem to love it. I also created popsicle stick puzzles with some prayers written on them that they need to put in order and then practice reading the prayer. It is a good start, but I'm always looking for ways to add more games.
I found that when I was in the classroom and prepping/planning for the following week, I didn't always have time to find/create as many games as I wanted to, especially for math workshop. This was before I knew what Teachers Pay Teachers was or my life probably would have been a lot easier. When I opened my TpT store, my goal was to make the games and math activities that I wanted to use but didn't have the time to create each week. I'm hoping I can make it easier for other teachers to use games in the classroom.