Thursday, May 1, 2014

Inspiring Students in Common Core - Part 1

I seldom find students who beg to sit and do worksheets all day long.  Of course they are needed occasionally, but we all remember those teachers back “in the day” who told us to read the chapter, finish the packet of worksheets, test on Friday, don’t bother me.  I have found that my day and their learning is so much better with just a simple game that takes very little effort or time. 

It’s called “Bazinga” for absolutely no reason.  I found this game on the internet, and I kept the name because I am a huge fan of Sheldon Cooper!!!  The game I found was written for elementary school, and I found some of the cards too young for my eighth-grade students.  The elementary game involved “crab-walking” around the classroom three times or doing twenty jumping jacks.  My eighth-grade students simply didn’t want the physical challenges……it is all about the numbers and winning the game for these guys!!!!! 

The set-up is simple.  You need Solo cups, a sharpie pen, and popsicle sticks……..and the game board!  I have six teams in my classroom that I ability grouped at the beginning of the year.  They do everything together poster work, research, discussions, worksheets, and………competitions!!!  Each group has a cup with sticks with their name on them.  One cup has six sticks with the six group names.  Some years I let them come up with a name for their group quite important to them!!!! other years it has simply been group 1, group 2, etc. You will be surprised at what a little family they become after working together for a year.  They defend each other, fight for each other, but most importantly, help each other. 

Let the games begin!!!!  Use it for any and every reason!!!  It works for review work, worksheets, vocabulary exercises, you name it!!!  I’m asked every week, “When are we playing Bazinga?”  The funny part of it all………it has nothing to do with the show or Sheldon or Bazinga its just the name on the one card they want drawn for their team. 

Important rules to remember:

Never, ever, ever draw the stick until you are confident they all have an answer preparedjust in case it is their name.
Shuffle the cards after the Bazinga card.  They don’t know a noun from a verb, but they can track the exact location of that card from 100 paces!!!!!
Set a timer.  It can come down to the very last minute……….let the timer be the judge, not you!!!!

Hop on over to my store to purchase the game as shown, or you can purchase a special upload in which you will choose the colors!!!

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