17 04 2008

Finished reading the book last night (I let pacepusher on my laptop to write up his blog on the marathon and he spent 4 hours on it so I had plenty of time!) so here are a couple of ideas for challenging activities:

  • Beat the teacher – the teacher goes over something like a concept or procedure, or they look at a piece of writing etc and work out mistakes themselves, then go over these with a partner and then have a class discussion on it.
  • Be the teacher – give the pupils 15 sums, some correct and some wrong and the pupils have to work out the answers and correct them as a teacher would.  They should write in comments, especially thinking about feedback that would be useful to the child who did the sums.
  • What number am I? – Have a secret number and the class have to guess it losing as few marks as possible.  A direct guess would cost 3 marks but a good question would only cost 1 ie is the number even.  You could later use decimals or negative numbers and then let a child pick the number.  To introduce the idea you could give out a few random numbers and ask the pupils to group them how they think.
  • Cross out game – Children write five different 2 digit numbers on a whiteboard and teachers gives statements to get them crossed out.  Can reinforce concepts by having a 100 square next to you.  More able pupils will pick higher numbers, less able can stick to numbers under 20.
  • Talk about numbers – put a sum on the board and ask the children to work out how they know it’s true.
  • Children teaching – Have five groups of 6 and give each a different task/procedure to produce a summary on ie different things about WW2 or different maths concepts.  Then change the pupils to six groups of 5 with each group now having a different person from each of the initial groups in it.  The children now teach each other from their summaries. 

Thought some of these would be really interesting to try, particularly the last one.

Extra question:  Are any other teachers out there also regular marathon (or ultra) runners?  I am beginning to think they are not very compatible as by the time you have got to the marathon (particularly a spring marathon) you are so tired from the intensive training and teaching that you are unlikely to perform at your best.  Then of course there are also all the germs flying about all the time and if you are training hard for the marathon you can be more susceptible to getting things as you are riding a thin line from doing too much.