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What was the coolest activity that you did in 2011 that I should use in 2012?

Discussion in 'Primary' started by histweb, Dec 30, 2011.

  1. HI, A New Year's reflective question: What was the coolest teaching activity you did in 2011 that I should use in 2012? One that I liked doing is this: As a history teacher, when investigating the reasons for demonstrations in 1960's America with my lower ability class, we arranged and carried out a demonstrations with placards etc. They got fully into the spirit of things - we stormed other classrooms etc. The absolutely loved it - they loved seeing the shock on their friends faces as they stormed their classes with slogans, banners, etc. (some good acting was needed by the other teachers as, of course, this was pre-determined and calculated - a calculated but risky activity!)
    This could be tweaked for use in other primary lessons.
    (for other activities that I did - click on my username 'histweb' and you can see what i have put into the TES resource bank) I am looking forward to your replies!! Happy NY
  2. I did a fab history investigation as part of my Egyptians topic. It was based on Paul Ginnis's 'Broken Pieces' idea and involved the children working in groups to 'solve' the mystery of who or what killed Tutenkhamun.
    They had clue cards with different historical, archaeological and medical facts on them, and a list of possible suspects. Then they had to work together to find the most compelling evidence and come to a conclusion.
    The children were riveted, and really felt like proper historians. The lesson drove home the message that history is an investigative, and changing, discipline, and how sometimes historians can only give a 'best guess' answer.
    I also did another Egyptian lesson, based on code-breaking, where I dressed up the classroom as an Egyptian tomb. Each table had to solve a mystery and crack a code aainst the clock, before moving onto the next table. At the end they had 7 'facts' about Egyptian life and a completed code. They LOVED this one!
    Will try and get these on the resources bank at some point.
  3. greta444

    greta444 New commenter

    I did an apprentice style activity for my DT. , evaluated the product, did market research, tested existing products, designed and made own product, packaging, adverts, written and filmed and finally best of all, they had to pitch their product to local business people who decided how much of the product they would order. When the orders were added up, three groups were fired and one group hired.
    Kids loved it.
  4. Probably the coolest lesson was the murder mystery day that I did for the year 5s (some my class and some not) while the year 6s were having their secondary school induction day. I based the day around the 'lessons on a plate murder mystery' but embellished it to last pretty much a whole day. I started off showing the film clip and asking the children to record everything they could tell about each of the suspects. We then had a discussion about motives for the murder which took us up to break time. After break we did the lesson provided, which was creating a graph and considering the evidence. This lead us to two possibilites (I felt it wasn't conclusive).
    The next stage involved me showing the children a copy of a handwritten note which I said had been found in the victim's pocket. The children did an analysis of the handwriting and still could not be 100% sure. This took us up to lunch time.
    After lunch I had invited the School Liaison Police Officer into school. She talked to the children about collecting evidence and the need to be sure about who had committed the crime. She brought finger printing materials with her which the children used them to take their own fingerprints. I then provided the final piece of evidence which was some finger prints which had been found on the note. The children were then able to eliminate a suspect and finally make an arrest.
    Preparation for the day took flippin' ages as you can imagine, but the children loved it!
  5. Wow! These are v cool - thanks for replying - the best thing is that, in principle, these can be adapted to any lesson really.
  6. I take lower set maths in year 5 and had a cocktail bar in my maths lesson! They each had a cup and measured its capacity with water. Then I showed them the possible ingredients for their cocktail ( juices, squash and lemonade). They designed their own recipes and then made them at the bar. They tasted them and redesgned varying proportions of ingredients.
    All can now remember what 200ml looks like and different ways of making that amount.
    The follow up was to make the cocktail for diffferent amounts of people and calculate how many cartons of each ingredient they needed. Pricing and charging could have followed but we did not get to that this time!
    I felt it was a very active practical lesson and they have definitely moved forwrad in their understanding of capacity.

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