Team work ,matters!

The ability to work together with others as part of a team is not simply a skill needed at school, it is a vital skill used in all areas of life. For me, school is, an excellent time to cultivate the teamwork skills, children will then draw from, throughout their life.

 

For a team to work together effectively, it takes all members of the team to respect each other’s abilities and opinions. Teamwork is a highly social activity and involves much interaction and exchanging of ideas and actions. We all understand that, being part of a team enables a child to move from more intrapersonal (individual) ways of thinking to interpersonal (communicating with others). It will help students in all areas of their learning, and help them to feel part of a community, too.

The biggest problem in my country’s educational system is that, teamwork is not encouraged at schools- at least, not as much as it should be….

Working as part of a team will strengthen students’ social and emotional skills, help develop their communication skills, and can improve confidence.

Team games, are also important…From experience, the best way to teach children English is to not only get them physically involved within the lesson, but also to create the illusion that they are simply playing games. And rather than focus on individual development, it is also a very good idea to promote class interaction as far as possible.

Even very young learners can become independent in their learning and guided early on they will be more likely to grow into autonomous and successful language learners.

Creative use of language makes communication possible even when students may not know the perfect grammar for what they are trying to say.Nothing is more true to life than that.

When students work in groups, they have to work together to accomplish a goal. Even when the use of grammar is weak in these collaborations, communication happens, and that will give your students an advantage, when they have to face communication in the English speaking world.

Encouragement in class,is crucial ! One way encouragement comes, is when lower level students see the accomplishments of higher level students.Less accomplished students will become better speakers just by talking to others more advanced than them, without help and without pressure….When they work in groups, I see that students help each other learn.

One of the most important things for me, as far as group work is concerned, is speaking!

Putting our students in groups, gets them speaking up and practicing the language that they are trying to learn. And, speaking, is not top priority in the Greek language class…. not even in the private Greek Language schools-“Frodisteria”…

Students who are kinesthetic learners, will benefit greatly from learning through games and group work,too. Students of varying English levels can work together to support each other, make decisions together and learning from one another. Games and group work can involve all of the aspects of language—listening, speaking, reading and writing.

 

In our class, children experience teamwork in many different forms. They may be asked to work in pairs, small groups, or larger groups on a variety of different things. They may be asked to work in teams for physical activities such as ball games or running games or more formal activities such as projects. Children also often form their own team activities during their play time.

“You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation” – Plato

I am sharing an interesting post about the benefits of Team Building, here

 

Benefits of Team Building

1.  Getting to know each other better
2.  Bonding
3.  Building team spirit
4.  Encouraging tolerance and understanding
5.  Creating a sense of belonging and connectivity
6.  Creating a climate of cooperation and collaborative problem-solving
7.  Improving motivation
8.  Improving communication within the group
9.  Team development – Building a community with a common purpose
10. Developing trust, care, compassion, kindness and creating empathy (Trusting each other AND yourselves)
11. Building self-esteem

12. Creating an understanding and awareness of individual differences, personality strengths and  weaknesses
13. Breaking down barriers
14. Creativity – Doing things differently! Out of the box!!
15. Higher levels of job satisfaction and commitment.And all the time … Having a huge amount of FUN

“PuppETs-European Travelers”: an amazing ETwinning project!

This old time classic pen pals project, gave a real purpose and meaning to learning a foreign language and helped the students experience education in a different country through European citizenship ,using Arts and crafts and a new tool: twinspace!

The project lasted  a school year and we had to complete many individual items . We had to create common projects about: ourselves, our school, our country , our town ,our favourite sports and hobbies, our customs and special traditions, our most favourite place in our countries , our daily routine and habits and also ,create our pen pals as PUPPETS , reading their appearance descriptions and looking at their self-portraits ! We lived in another country, as our school and country ambassadors, and experienced life in another class, far away from home, for one school year! Puppet-students, wrote on their twinspace diaries about their adventures and collaboratively wrote and put on stage, a puppet play about their experience! Our projects and letters were both sent to our friends by snail mail and uploaded on twinspace, to share and compare, in a different class.

Pedagogical Innovation and Creativity 

This was a new and innovative partnership for my school; It was the first time the students participated in such an innovative ETwinning project.

Both, group work and independent research was used  by pupils.

The innovation and creativity of the project is based on the following factors:

1.The willingness of the teachers involved to communicate easily – via phone, email, sms

2.All partner  schools being inclusive of each other, working as one unit on each common project

3.That the children felt able to be creative with their audience in the partner school in mind and dare to share and compare.They also used their imagination and creativity as well as their artistic skills, in order to create their puppet pals and write/stage their puppet plays.

4.That the learning from the project was so significant that it will not be lost from children’s minds

5.The student-Puppet-Ambassadors, created by and for the students ,served as a  meaningful pathway towards understanding and learning more about our friends.

6.Our student-Puppets project, provided the opportunity to break down classroom walls. It gave our students a chance, to see a world outside of their walls.Students,  became fully aware of the other European partner countries and their ways of life. Citizenship became a practical ,rather than theoretical, part of the curriculum.

7.Our ETwinning project, encouraged cooperation between teachers and unified learning. It also offered us the chance to collaborate with the local Puppet Theatre and museum,which was highly beneficial for all of us.

The scope of learning widened from English skills to several other subjects. The idea of being   partners in a European project, encouraged the pupils to find out more about different European countries, their nature, art, food and ways  of living. In the context of European partnerships,our work  provided in the shared learning environment were not only learning material, but were a meaningful pathway towards understanding and learning more about our partners.

  1. In this sense, the true revelation has been that apart from climate and language, people in Europe are essentially very similar with shared values and interests. Surely, this  helped us to overcome our prejudices and made us more open to intercultural cooperation.

Curricular integration 

The theme was chosen deliberately to ensure that the project and its work was as cross-curricular as possible. The areas of ,EFL,  social studies, expressive arts, citizenship,and basic IT , have all been integrated into the sharing of  our common  project activities .

The main focus was to improve the learning of English.

This fitted well into the Curriculum and all my  pupils  benefited.  Our  project involved MFL, language, social studies, expressive arts and basic technology.

We held a European Day of Languages to get the rest of the school know our European friends better. We also had “Puppet Theatre” days, when our student-puppet-guests, presented their projects about their country and way of life, to us! It was exciting to lend them our voices and have them “talk” to us-we could also ask them questions! We later,uploaded all the photos  on our Twinspace “Puppet Diaries”, where everyone could make comments or just read, share and compare ideas, thoughts and feelings.Finally, we were invited to take part in a local Puppet Theatre Festival, where we had the chance to present our play to the local community!

A second focus was citizenship. By exchanging information about each other’s towns, lives  and heritage, the pupils  learned a great deal about each other’s environment, way of life and culture. As far as my school is concerned, I made sure that almost all our project activities were connected  to each of our English coursebook units. Luckily, our coursebooks , are based on both cross curricular and cross cultural topics quite relevant to our Etwinning project theme! Also, they are based on both creative  project work and group  collaboration which  was  highly helpful in our Etwinning project!

I  made sure that, ALL my 85  students, in different age and  language level, took part in our  Etwinning project, a fact  that  proved to be a real challenge!

Finally, our student-puppet-guests, are going to spend their Summer holidays  in our partner countries, write a Summer Diary entry about their Summer adventures and come back home in Autumn, to share it with us.

Communication and exchange between partner schools 

From the beginning, there was a strong plan which gave the teachers guidelines, responsibilities and timescale for each element of the project.

What we practically did  ,was  that, we sent our pen friends all our group projects, on a topic we had already worked on in class and we asked them to reply ,by sending us the same topic based project! The projects we sent, were  in the form of posters, flyers, brochures, magazines, PP presentations, albums , videos, etc….In class, we talked about the similarities and differences of cultures and ways of life !

The students’ very first project was their self-portraits and appearance descriptions, which were used to help their  pals create their puppet-selves!

Arts and craft played an important role in n our project work !

If the kids felt  the need to personalize their work  even more, they were  free to include little gifts having to do with themselves or the project topic, … I always printed  lots of pictures and displayed  them on our school  notice boards.Students were also encouraged to interact on  twinspace ,both at the school ICT lab and from home. This all gave a real purpose and meaning to learning a foreign language.

In these difficult times of financial crisis , our students were able to live abroad, as puppets and experience life in a different country and class for a whole school year ,sharing and comparing our ways of life and making new friends.

The most important tool of the project , was our Twinspace Forums Puppet Diaries: by visiting the Puppet Diaries on a regular basis,  the children via their puppets, became ambassadors of our school and country! The pupils shared information and experiences, and thus learned from each other and strengthened their communication skills. They were also encouraged to interact on twinspace Discussion Forums, where they had to answer simple questions about themselves and our projects, as well as to read and make comments on their partners’ replies.

Collaboration between partner schools. 

In collaboration the teachers in all countries, decided on the range of topics that we would cover and the optimum time for sending/receiving the correspondence items.

We tried together  to do some pre-matching of pupils and classes , based on their known interests.

By all means we  ‘recycled’ language that pupils have previously learnt in their English class .

We created a teachers’  e-mail exchange, too and a frequent collaboration on the Teachers’ bulletin.

We all had to make our partner’s Puppet-Self! In other words, create a puppet-pal ,with similar characteristics with our pen pal, to host in our class and country,for the whole school year!

Our puppets, would travel, play and learn, with their pen pals, in another country and class,experiencing a different way of life.

We created  our Puppet-Ambassadors Diaries on Forums , which we often updated, with the help of our puppets.

We uploaded   videos about our area ,as well as videos about our schools and puppet plays.

We also agreed on the letters and projects which would be implemented by our pupils and agreed on  wall display of correspondence received from partner schools .

We made  questionnaires, and quizzes about our common projects to see how much we had learned, about each other.

We finally, decided to have our students host our guest Puppets during the summer and write on the Puppets’ Summer Diaries which would later be sent , along with the puppets, back home!

We all agreed that, all  students’  final products -our projects,  would be achieved through group work ! No group  project was sent abroad, before it was presented in class ,with the help of our student-puppet-friends and was later displayed on the classroom walls and ,finally, uploaded on Twinspace Pages.

Use of technology 

Some of the partner schools ,had not  used most of the  web tools we had to use for this project,  before .

I had small  groups of my students, use Photoshop to enhance and crop photos and then put them into Movie Maker to produce a school video  to be posted on Twinspace for other schools to view and had them to create  a Quiz about our town. We also used Kizoa to make short videos, padlet to work on our Puppet play script, collaboratively, and a Word Cloud Generator,for feedback.

I have consulted and collaborated with partner teachers using Skype and a webcam. Outcomes and project work were saved on Twinspace ,allowing uploaded materials and presentations to be compared and contrasted easily across all partner  countries.My students, were asked to interact with their pen friends on twinspace ,using their home computers, too !   Video-conferencing, using new webcams, were all new experiences for us .Our project brought a new and exciting dimension to our work.

Actually, the ability to use ICT is becoming more and more vital in today’s modern information society. However, ICT skills are still acquired mainly outside public educational institutes, in my country.

Actually, communicating with real people from other countries appeared to motivate the learners in a very special way, also in the use of basic ICT tools, mainly with our ICT teacher’s guidance.

Through ETwinning pupils learn to use ICT tools in a pedagogically meaningful way.

They wrote letters in the forums, chatted, did interactive exercises, took and uploaded digital photos and videos, searched for information, etc. And all this took place in the pedagogical context of studying English communication

Results, impact and documentation

The pupils were inspired and motivated. They had a great deal of fun working collaboratively .

Students had an opportunity to develop a sense of pride and respect toward other traditions. Our Puppet-Ambassadors, made Europe a more real concept, especially for those students who have never traveled abroad.

The organisation and commitment of the students has been very impressive.

The children showed a great interest in exploring another country and its way of life, as well as demonstrating increased motivation in learning a foreign language. They were always eager to participate, found information themselves, drew pictures, made posters, presented the project to other classes and last, but not least, create their own puppets and write their own Puppet play!

The group  work of my students was collected, and ultimately, shared with our partners. Writing and illustrating personal responses gave students the opportunity to boost their art and creative writing skills. Reading the personal responses of their European  partners, gave students greater insight into their partners’ context and worldview.

The project also brought the class together, as the pupils were working as a team. Through these activities the children also became ambassadors for the school and country .

The pupils  learnt from each other and strengthened  their communication skills.

All in all, we achieved   :

  • to promote group activities  for tolerance and cultural understanding;
  • to strengthen my students’ intercultural competences in order to be ready for responsible understanding of Europe’s identity and common values;
  • to develop the European dimension through arts education (puppets) and creativity with the aim to promote multiculturalism and tolerance between students;
  • To develop “Out-of-the-box” activities that would encourage mutual support, team building and group cohesion ;
  • Encourage personalized learning approaches by acquiring new artistic and pedagogical skills with the aim of developing new ideas and creativity of the students involved in the project

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interactive Grammar Notebooks-part c

As I had already written in my first  and second posts on Interactive Grammar Notebooks, last year was my first year to use interactive notebooks.  Before school began, I found myself  with the desire PLUS precious  direction, from my  amazing Greek colleague, Papadeli Sophia !

I have to thank her again so much, for all the inspiration and support!

Overall, they were a success- Experimenting on them during this first school year with few students, among whom was my daughter, was great fun!…I’m sure, we’ll do much better this  year ,with all my afternoon classes, at school!

This  notebook is built, by adding each grammar skill or concept as an insert gradually throughout the year as they are introduced to new material. By the end of year, they  have a complete notebook they can use as a reference and I can use as an assessment tool or portfolio piece.This is simple and can be done with any grammar curriculum we are using.

First, I used a common notebook,  school glue, scissors and markers/colored pencils. Since we are fully stocked on school supplies, I did not need to make any new purchases.

Then, ideally, we should reserve the first 1-2 pages for the table of contents. I admit that, I didn’t do that, this first year…Going forward, we add a new page for each skill.

The next step is to find some ideas or even printables and foldables for the Grammar notebooks …I asked Sophia Papadeli to help me get started and I also visited Pinterest and used my imagination and creativity, of course!

Here are just  few new pages for you to have a look at, get inspired and hopefully, start your own Grammar Notebooks, this school year!

PREPOSITIONS OF PLACE/MOVEMENT/TIME

PREPOSITIONS OF TIME

PRESENT PROGRESSIVE

BE GOING TO

 

 

BE GOING TO for making predictions based on evedence

BE GOING TO -plans

WILL

PAST PROGRESSIVE

 

ARTICLES

RELATIVES

COUNTABLE-UNCOUNTABLE NOUNS

REPORTED SPEECH

EXPRESS FUTURE PLANS, USING THE PRESENT PROGRESSIVE

SOME/ANY- EXPRESSING QUANTITY

MODALS ( A guessing game, using pictures)

 

EASTER Hopscotch

I can assure you that,   students remember and correctly spell about the same number of EASTER  words after learning with HOPSCOTCH, as they do after a teacher-centered lesson.

Importantly however, they enjoy playing this  game very much and they report better attitudes towards studying English after learning vocabulary with HOPSCOTCH and games in general, compared to traditional teaching.

All that is required for this fun game is a few Easter sight words  and sidewalk chalk or masking tape.

On rainy days, consider using masking tape on a floor and write each Easter word on a piece of tape or index card – just make sure kids do not slip on the index card while playing the game.

You can also use the “portable” Hopscotch, like the one in the photo below…You can carry it with you to a different classroom each time, in case you don’t have your own classroom!

 

  1. You can play with Easter pictures to help aid recognition or practice new words.
  1. Add numbers to aid in number recognition and  practice plurals. eg ” Seven eggs”
  2. Add colors to help with color recognition, too.” Seven red eggs”
  3. Play with spelling words.  Have child read word, then look away and practice orally spelling the word.

  1. With older students, play with vocabulary words –child tells you definition of word they land on.
  1. Play with English words and mother tongue .For example, write an Easter word like “Church” and child has to tell me word in mother tongue..
  1. Spell hopscotch:Give each student an Easter word to spell as she jumps through the boxes. If she spells the word wrong, she must repeat that word on her next turn. The first person to get through the entire board wins a point for her team.

      8.Word hopscotch:Method: – Draw a simple hopscotch outline on the floor with chalk , use tape or use the “Portable” version of it.

– Children take turns to hop (walk or jump) from square to square – On each square they say an Easter word that they know. These may be words in general, or words    associated with a particular Easter topic or theme, eg Spring, Food, Traditions etc. – When they run out of words they must ‘give up’ .

Variation: – Teacher puts pictures /flashcards of familiar Easter objects on each square -Children must name the objects as they hop onto the square…… More difficult:  -Children must say something about the object in the picture.

Teachers4Europe:”Mini Europe in a box” project (Greek version)

mosa1
Η φετινή μας απόπειρα, να εργαστούμε πάνω σε ένα νέο έργο στα πλαίσια του Teachers4Europe project,  συνάντησε πολλά προβλήματα!…Το βασικότερο όλων, ήταν πως, δεν είχα ώρες, εκτός των ωρών της Αγγλικής Γλώσσας, για να εργαστώ! Σημειώστε εδώ πως, στα πλαίσια του μαθήματός μου, εργαζόμαστε ήδη σε άλλα δύο προγράμματα etwinning και ένα του Βρετανικού Συμβουλίου !
Πίεσα πάρα πολύ να μου δωθεί ΜΙΑ ώρα Ευέλικτης Ζώνης, ή άλλη, για να καταφέρω να ξεκινήσω, και αυτό κατέστη δυνατό, μόλις …πριν ένα μήνα!!
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Τέλος καλό, όλα καλά λοιπόν, κι εδώ μπορώ σήμερα, να μοιραστώ το μεγαλύτερο μέρος της δουλειάς μας έως τώρα, η οποία δεν έχει ολοκληρωθεί ακόμη, αλλά θα ολοκληρωθεί, στο τέλος Μαίου!
Σκέφτηκα πολύ πάνω στην επιλογή θέματος , φέτος…
Τα πράγματα, στη χώρα, είναι κρίσιμα…οικονομική ανέχεια, κρίση αξιών, προσφυγικό και τόσα άλλα……Πολλοί κατηγορούν την Ευρώπη για όλα και δεν βλέπουν προοπτική πουθενά…
Σκέφτηκα λοιπόν πως, θα ήθελα να επιστρέψω στα βασικά…τις Ευρωπαικές αξίες και τον Ευρωπαικό πολιτισμό! Τα παιδια αυτά, οι σημερινοί μαθητές μου, θα είναι το μέλλον αυτής της Ευρώπης!
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Χρειάζεται, να γνωρίσουν όλα τα θετικά της στοιχεία, όλα όσα μας κάνουν υπερήφανους και να την αγαπήσουν , να επιτρέψουν ως νέοι Ευρωπαίοι αργότερα στην πηγή του Ευρωπαικού πολιτισμού, κι από εκεί να δροσιστούν . Να εγκαταλείψουν ιδέες ξενοφοβίας και ρατσισμού και να ανακαλύψουν πως, αυτά που μας ενώνουν , είναι περισσότερα από αυτά που μας χωρίζουν!
Να δημιουργήσουν τέλος, την Ευρώπη των λαών και των πολιτισμών, αυτή την Ευρώπη που όλοι οραματιζόμαστε!
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Το μύνημά μας στην Ευρώπη του σήμερα, αποφασίσαμε να είναι αυτό:
( “Ευρώπη, ν’ αγαπάς τους ανθρώπους” ) 
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 A “Teachers4Europe” project, 2015-16
Ε Τάξη, 30 Δημοτικό Σχολείο Λάρισας
Υπεύθυνη εκπαιδευτικός: Αφροδίτη Γκιούρη ( ΠΕ 06)
Σχεδιασμός Εργασίας
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H ιδέα του συγκεκριμένου  project, δημιουργήθηκε μετά το ταξίδι μου στις Βρυξέλλες πέρσυ, όταν επισκέφτηκα την υπαίθρια έκθεση Mini Europe δίπλα στο Atomium!
Σκέφτηκα τότε πως, σε δύσκολα χρόνια οικονομικής κρίσης για την πατρίδα μας και τις οικογένειες των μαθητών μου, σχεδόν κανένας τους δεν είναι πια δυνατό να ταξιδέψει στην Ευρώπη, ή τον κόσμο!
Αποφάσισα  λοιπόν ,να…κλείσουμε όλη την Ευρώπη σε μικρά κουτιά , να τοποθετήσουμε σε αυτά όσους μικρούς “θησαυρούς” σχετικά με κάθε χώρα ανακαλύπταμε στα νοερά μας ταξίδια μέσα στην τάξη και να έχουμε έτσι τη δυνατότητα, να επισκεφτούμε με τη φαντασία μας, όσες φορές θέλουμε, την…μικρή-μεγάλη μας Ήπειρο!
Οι μικροί μας αυτοί “θησαυροί”, μπορούσαν  να είναι: γνώσεις, εικόνες, κάρτες, βιβλία, μουσικές, συνταγές, ταξιδιωτικά ενθύμια-souvenirs, χρήματα, μνημεία, λέξεις, κι οτιδήποτε άλλο ένας αληθινός ταξιδιώτης έχει στις αποσκευές του και τις αναμνήσεις του μετά από ένα ταξίδι!
Τρόπος προσέγγισης στις αξίες και τους στόχους της ΕΕ
Ο βασικός σκοπός του project ήταν να βοηθήσει τους μαθητές να εμπλουτίσουν τις γνώσεις τους σχετικά με την Ευρώπη γενικά και ειδικότερα, σχετικά με τον σπουδαίο  πολιτισμό της.
Κυρίως δε, με όσα στοιχεία αυτού του πολιτισμού , την καθιστούν μία Ήπειρο με κορμό της ύπαρξής της αξίες, δίχως τις οποίες η Ευρώπη δεν μπορεί να υφίσταται. Αυτές οι βασικές αξίες είναι : σεβασμός της ανθρώπινης αξιοπρέπειας, ισότητα και σεβασμός των ανθρώπινων δικαιωμάτων, δημοκρατία, ελευθερία.
Άλλος ένας στόχος, ήταν να ευαισθητοποιήσει τους μικρούς μαθητές , σε θέματα συνεργασίας  και αλληλουποστήριξης, στα πλαίσια των ομαδικών δραστηριοτήτων, καθώς αυτές οι δύο έννοιες ,αποτελούν τον κορμό των Ευρωπαικών ιδεωδών .
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Διδακτικές προσεγγίσεις που υιοθετήθηκαν
Η μεθοδολογία του project βασίστηκε σε προσεγγίσεις διαθεματικές , βιωματικές συνεργατικές, επικοινωνιακές καθώς και μάθησης με μέσο το παιχνίδι.
Με την ολοκλήρωση του project, ευελπιστώ πως οι μαθητές μου,  έχουν γνωρίσει καλύτερα την  Ευρώπη γεωγραφικά και κυρίως πολιτιστικά.
Κυρίως όμως , έχουν κατανοήσει τις βασικές αξίες που κρατούν τις Ευρωπαικές χώρες ενωμένες και το σημαντικό ρόλο που αυτές παίζουν στην καθημερινότητά μας. Έχουν  επίσης κατανοήσει  σε σημαντικό βαθμό, την σπουδαιότητα των εννοιών “ αποδοχή”, “ συνεργασία”,  “σεβασμός”.
Εμπλοκή των μαθητών στη δράση
Οι μαθητές μου, επέδειξαν ζωηρό ενδιαφέρον για το project!
Ήταν μία τάξη που ποτέ πριν δεν είχε την ευκαιρία να λάβει μέρος σε παρόμοια δράση και είχε δυσκολίες ,εξ αρχής ,σε θέματα ομαδικής συνεργασίας .
Η δράση, ενίσχυσε το κομμάτι της ομαδικότητας και της αλληλουποστήριξης , καθώς και την δημιουργικότητα και την πρωτοβουλία των μαθητών.

Επίσης, τους δόθηκε η δυνατότητα να έχουν την εμπειρία της βιωματικής διδασκαλίας και διασκέδασαν εξαιρετικά ,με όσες δραστηριότητες είχανε σχέση με παιχνίδι και κίνηση!

Τέλος, είχανε μια μοναδική ευκαιρία να διευρύνουν τους ορίζοντές τους στον κόσμο και να γνωρίσουν την Ήπειρό μας, το Ευρωπαικό μας σπίτι, γεωγραφικά αλλά και πολιτιστικά.

Ήταν μία πολύτιμη εμπειρία για όλους !
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Οι δραστηριότητες, σε σύντομη παρουσίαση
Δραστηριότητες warming-up
Γνωριμία με το βιβλίο “ Πάμε να εξερευνήσουμε την Ευρώπη”
Ξεφυλλίζουμε το βιβλίο και εργαζόμαστε σε ομάδες πάνω στο Quiz της σελίδας — και στο χάρτη της σελίδας —

Ενεργοποίηση «Το Τρένο της Ε.Ε.»
Ασκήσεις ενεργοποίησης και ισορροπίας των μελών του σώματος ατομικά. Καθένας είναι μια χώρα της Ε.Ε. Στη συνέχεια κινούνται ομαδικά σαν «Τρένο».
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 «Το Όχι αποκοιμήθηκε στην αγκαλιά του Ναι!»
Ζευγάρια. Ο ένας είναι το Όχι και ο άλλος το Ναι. Ξεκινούν με λεκτική επικοινωνία ο ένας λέει μόνο «Ναι» και ο άλλος μόνο «Όχι» και εξερευνούν διαφορετικούς τρόπους πχ ένταση, ταχύτητα κτλ. Στη συνέχεια οι λέξεις αποκτούν κίνηση και γίνονται χορός.
«Δράση- Αντίδραση. Λεκτικοί Ισχυρισμοί»
Σε τριάδες. Ένας είναι Παρατηρητής. Οι άλλοι δύο είναι απέναντι με απόσταση μεταξύ τους και με τον δικό του τρόπο ο καθένας, εκφράζουν εναλλάξ τις Αντίθετες Έννοιες πχ. Το έκανες!# Δεν το έκανα!, Το είπες!# Δεν το είπα! Κτλ. Συνεχίζεται μέχρι την κλιμάκωση της έντασης. Συζήτηση και καταγραφή των συναισθημάτων και των ρόλων που ανακύπτουν.
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«Ευρωπαϊκό Ταγκό»
Ζευγάρια. Καθένας είναι μια χώρα της Ε.Ε. Ο ένας κλείνει τα μάτια του (τυφλός) κι ακολουθεί τις οδηγίες του ζευγαριού του. Όταν ο οδηγός- χορευτής τον ακουμπάει με την παλάμη του στον θώρακα τότε ο «τυφλός» χορευτής πηγαίνει μπροστά, όταν τον ακουμπάει στην πλάτη, πηγαίνει πίσω και ανάλογα όταν τον ακουμπάει στον δεξί ώμο πηγαίνει δεξιά κι αντίστοιχα στον αριστερό ώμο, αριστερά. Αλλάζουν ρόλους.
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«Ε.Ε.: Η ισχύς εν τη ενώσει…» 
Ομαδικό παιχνίδι. Όλοι πιάνονται από την μέση. Ο πρώτος έχει δαγκάνες και προσπαθεί/ διεκδικεί να πιάσει την ουρά, τον τελευταίο. Δεν πρέπει να σπάσει ο κορμός αλλά να παραμείνουν όλοι ισχυρά ενωμένοι μέχρι το τέλος!!!!
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Βασικές δραστηριότητες
 ACTIVITY 1
ΠΑΙΖΩ ΚΑΙ ΓΝΩΡΙΖΩ ΤΗΝ ΕΥΡΩΠΗ
Παίζουμε δύο παιχνίδια γνώσεων που αφορούν το χάρτη της Ευρώπης και τα μεγαλύτερα μνημεία της τα οποία δανειζόμαστε από το βιβλίο “Πάμε να εξερευνήσουμε την Ευρώπη” το οποίο υπάρχει από πέρυσι, στη βιβλιοθήκη του σχολείου.
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ACTIVITY 2
ΣΚΥΤΑΛΟΔΡΟΜΙΑ ΣΤΟΝ ΕΥΡΩΠΑΙΚΟ ΧΑΡΤΗ
Αναρτούμε έναν χάρτη της Ευρώπης στον τοίχο.
Χωριζόμαστε σε 4 ομάδες. Ένας παίκτης από κάθε ομάδα, 4 παίχτες κάθε φορά, τρέχουν  απο τον απέναντι τοίχο προς τον χάρτη, με σκοπό πρώτοι ν’ αγγίξουν τη χώρα το όνομα της οποίας , κάθε φορά ακούει να φωνάζει η εκπαιδευτικός, κερδίζοντας ένα βαθμό για την ομάδα του.
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ACTIVITY 3
ΤΟ ΕΥΡΩΠΑΙΚΟ ΜΑΣ ΔΙΑΒΑΤΗΡΙΟ
Γνωριμία με το Βιβλιαράκι μας: Το “Ευρωπαικό μας Διαβατήριο” !
Είναι για μας ένα πολύ σημαντικό εργαλείο, καθώς, δεν υπάρχει εργαστήριο πληροφορικής και καθηγητής πληροφορικής στο σχολείο μας!
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Χωριζόμαστε σε 4 ομάδες.
Σε κάθε ομάδα μαθητών , αντιστοιχεί μία ομάδα 7 χωρών, έπειτα από κλήρωση.
Διαδικασία
α) Οι ομάδες, συνεργάζονται για να κατασκευάσουν τις 7 σημαίες τους. Πίσω από κάθε σημαία, αναγράφονται 2 ερωτήσεις σχετικές με αυτή τη χώρα, τις οποίες οι μαθητές επιλέγουν.Οι σημαίες αυτές, χρησιμοποιούνται για να στολίσουν τα κουτιά κάθε χώρας και σε επόμενο μάθημα , στο “ Euro-καπελοπαιχνίδι” γνώσεων!
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β) Στις ομάδες, δίνεται ο χάρτης της Ευρωπαικής Ένωσης σε κομμάτια παζλ. Καλούνται να συνεργαστούν, για να τον ανακατασκευάσουν  σωστά , με πρότυπο τον χάρτη του Ευρωπαικού τους Διαβατηρίου, όσο πιο γρήγορα γίνεται! Η καλή συνεργασία, φέρνει και το καλύτερο δυνατό αποτέλεσμα!
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γ) Κατασκευάζουνε, συνεργαζόμενοι, το βασικό αξιοθέατο της κάθε χώρας που έχουν αναλάβει ως ομάδα, σε χαρτί και χαρτόνι. Διαβάζουνε σχετικά με αυτό στο Ευρωπαικό μας διαβατήριο και γράφουμε βασικές πληροφορίες από πίσω από κάθε αξιοθέατο.
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δ) Οι ομάδες, συνεργαζόμενες δημιουργούν σε χαρτί και χαρτόνι, κατασκευές που αναπαριστούν, στοιχεία σημαντικά από κάθε χωρα: το νόμισμα, κάποιες φράσεις στην γλώσσα της χώρας αυτής, συνταγές που έχουνε βρεί στο Διαβατήριο ή στο διαδίκτυο στο σπίτι τους  κτλ
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ε) Τους ζητείται, να φέρουν σε επόμενο μάθημα από το σπίτι τους, αφού ψάξουν και  ρωτήσουν στο φιλικό κι οικογενειακό τους περιβάλλον, τυχόν αντικείμενα, που προέρχονται από αυτή τη χώρα : souvenirs, μία κάρτα, ένα γραμματόσημο, νομίσματα, εικόνες διάσημων ανθρώπων από κάθε χώρα αλλά και  Cds μουσικής  γνωστών μουσικών , ταινίες , βιβλία, φωτογραφίες, δώρα, περιοδικά με σχετικές δημοσιεύσεις, ακόμη και είδη διατροφής, εάν υπάρξουν…οτιδήποτε θελήσουν να φέρουν στη τάξη!
Επίσης, τους ζητείται να φέρουν ένα κουτί παπουτσιών για κάθε μία από τις 7 χώρες της ομάδας τους.
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ζ) Τέλος, εργαζόμενοι σε ζευγάρια, μέσα σε κάθε ομάδα, στολίζουν με τις σημαίες των χωρών, κάθε κουτί παπουτσιών που έχουν φέρει από το σπίτι, και τοποθετούν μέσα σε αυτό, όσους μικρούς “ θησαυρούς”, έχουν καταφέρει να συγκεντρώσουν και να κατασκευάσουν στην τάξη!
Συζητούν σχετικά με τον τρόπο που επιθυμούν να παρουσιάσουν το υλικό τους και όλα όσα θα ήθελαν να μοιραστούν με τις άλλες ομάδες σχετικά με την κάθε χώρα!
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ACTIVITY 4
ΠΑΡΟΥΣΙΑΣΗ ΧΩΡΩΝ :EUROPE IN A BOX
Οι κάθε ομάδα, χωρίζεται σε  ζευγάρια, τα  οποία παρουσιάζουν το περιέχόμενο των κουτιών τους στους συμμαθητές τους, με τον τρόπο που επιθυμούν! Ακολουθούν διευκρινιστικές ερωτήσεις από την τάξη, σε κάθε ομάδα.
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ACTIVITY 5
ΑΝΑΤΡΟΦΟΔΟΤΗΣΗ-ΣΥΖΗΤΗΣΗ-ΕΝΤΥΠΩΣΕΙΣ
Ακολουθεί συζήτηση, σχολιασμός της όλης εμπειρίας, μοίρασμα συναισθημάτων και σκέψεων, γνώμες και εντυπώσεις.

ACTIVITY 6
ΠΑΙΧΝΙΔΙΑ ΕΜΠΕΔΩΣΗΣ 

α)TIC-TAK BOOM
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Χρησιμοποιούμε ως βάση το γνωστό παιχνίδι Tic-tak boom!
Ένας παίκτης από κάθε ομάδα, έρχεται στον πίνακα ,φορά ένα καπέλο με το όνομα μίας από τις Ευρωπαικές χώρες  και οι συμπαίκτες του στην ομάδα, του δίνουν όσες περισσότερες πληροφορίες μπορούν γι’ αυτή τη χώρα, μέσα σε ορισμένο χρόνο -ώσπου να..σκασει η  “ βομβα” του χρονόμετρου!
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Χρησιμοποιούν το Ευρωπαικό μας  Διαβατήριο για πληροφορίες .
Εάν ο παίκτης, καταφέρει πριν τη λήξη του χρόνου, να βρει το όνομα της χώρας που υπάρχει στο καπέλλο του, κερδίζει ένα βαθμό για την ομάδα του!
Το παιχνίδι ολοκληρώνεται, όταν παίξουν όλα τα μέλη και των 4 ομάδων.
Οι νικητές , παίρνουν μικρά αυτοκόλλητα με ευρωπαικές σημαίες!
β) TWISTER
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Βάση μας, το γνωστό παιχνίδι Twister.
Ένας παίκτης από κάθε μία από τις 4 ομάδες μας, εκπροσωπεί την ομάδα του σε κάθε γύρο του παιχνιδιού.
Σε κάθε έναν από τους χρωματιστούς κύκλους της βάσης του παιχνιδιού, τοποθετείται μία πλαστικοποιημένη Ευρωπαική σημαία.
Η εκπαιδευτικός, γυρνά το spinner και οι 4 μαθητές , πρέπει να τοποθετούν τα χέρια ή τα πόδια τους κάθε φορά στο σωστό κύκλο.
‘Οποιος κάνει λαθος, βγαίνει απο το παιχνίδι και νικητής σε κάθε γύρο είναι αυτος που μένει τελευταίος, κερδίζοντας ένα βαθμό για την ομάδα του.
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Το παιχνίδι ολοκληρώνεται, όταν παίξουν όλα τα μέλη και των 4 ομάδων.
Οι νικητές , παίρνουν μικρά αυτοκόλλητα με ευρωπαικές σημαίες!
γ) Το Euro-καπελοπαιχνίδι
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Ένας παίκτης από κάθε ομάδα, έρχεται κάθε φορα στον πίνακα, κρατώντας από μία σημαία από αυτές που είχανε κατασκευάσει οι ομάδες σε προηγούμενο στάδιο, πίσω από τις οποίες , αναγράφονται δύο ερωτήσεις σχετικές με την χώρα.
Ο παίκτης, διαβάζει δυνατά, μία απο τις ερωτήσεις πάνω στη σημαία του, και οι άλλες ομάδες ΠΛΗΝ της δικής του, προσπαθούν συνεργαζόμενες κι ανατρέχοντας στο μικρο Ευρωπαικό μας Διαβατήριο, να βρούνε την απάντηση πρώτες, πριν τις υπόλοιπες ομάδες.
Το παιχνίδι ολοκληρώνεται, όταν παίξουν όλα τα μέλη και των 4 ομάδων
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Η πρώτη ομάδα, σε ταχύτητα και αποτελεσματική συνεργασία , μετά την ολοκλήρωση του παιχνιδιού, κερδίζει πάλι, σημαίες σε αυτοκόλλητα!
δ) MEMORY GAME
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Πρώτο Στάδιο:
‘Ολες οι σημαίες των χωρών, όλων των ομάδων , τοποθετούνται στο πάτωμα . Επίσης, στο πάτωμα τοποθετούνται χαρτάκια στο μέγεθος των σημαιών, με τα ονόματα των Ευρωπαικών χωρών.
Ένας παίκτης κάθε φορά, εκπροσωπώντας την ομάδα του, πρέπει να ταιριάξει ένα όνομα και την αντίστοιχη σημαία με επιτυχία! Εάν τα καταφέρει, κερδίζει τη σημαία. Εάν όχι, την αφήνει στο ίδιο σημείο και επόμενος παίκτης, επόμενης ομάδας ακολουθεί.
Η ομάδα με τις περισσότερες σημαίες στην κατοχή της, είναι η νικήτρια ομάδα!
Παραλαγή -Αντί για σημαίες, μπορούμε να εργαστούμε με χαρτάκια πάνω στα οποία υπάρχουν οι λέξεις-χαιρετσμοί σε κάθε γλώσσα, τις οποίες πρέπει να τις ταιριάξουν με τα ονόματα των χωρών με τον ίδιο τρόπο.
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Δεύτερο Στάδιο:
Διαφορετικοί Χαιρετισμοί
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Εξηγούμε στα παιδιά ότι συχνά οι άνθρωποι χαιρετιούνται από τόπο σε τόπο με διαφορετικό τρόπο στην Ευρώπη. Έτσι, τους προτείνουμε να χωριστούν σε ζευγάρια και να δικομάσουμε διαφορετικούς τρόπους χαιρετισμού: π.χ. Ελλάδα, Αλβανία, Ιταλία, Σουηδία, Γερμανία, Γαλλία, Ισπανία.
Όσο διαρκεί η μουσική χορεύουν , όταν σταματά πρέπει να βρουν κάποιον και να τον χαιρετίσουν ανάλογα με την εντολή μας.
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ACTIVITY 7
H ΣΗΜΑΙΑ ΤΩΝ ΑΣΤΕΡΙΩΝ
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α)Διαβάζουμε το βιβλίο “ Τα Αστέρια της Ευρώπης”.
Στη διάρκεια της ανάγνωσης, οι ομάδες κρατάνε σημειώσεις και γράφουν ιδέες οι οποίες τους άρεσαν στην ιστορία.
Κατόπι, συζητάμε όλοι μαζί στην τάξη, για όλα όσα κατέγραψαν.
Τονίζονται οι ιδέες που αφορούν τις θεμελιώδεις Ευρωπαικές αξίες όπως η Αλληλεγγύη και η Ειρήνη!
Καταγράφουμε τις σημαντικότερες ιδέες,  στον πίνακα .
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Δίνεται σε κάθε ομάδα, ένα χαρτί Α3 στο οποίο καλούνται όλοι να αντιγράψουν  τις 12 σημαντικότερες -κατά την ομάδα τους – Ευρωπαικές αξίες, σε κάθε ένα από τα 12 αστέρια της Ευρωπαικής Σημαίας.
Στο τελευταίο στάδιο, οι ομάδες, πάλι συνεργαζόμενες, χρωματίζουν τη σημαία τους!
Όλες οι Σημαίες των Αστεριών, στολίζουν τους τοίχους της τάξης!
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β) Ετοιμάζουμε το δικό μας μικρό θεατρικό, βασιζόμενο στην ιστορία.
Οι μαθητές, εργαζόμενοι σε ομάδες των 5-6 ατόμων, γράφουν το δικό τους μικρό θεατρικό δρώμενο με ηρωίδα  την Ευρώπη,  και το παρουσιάζουν στην τάξη αργότερα, για τους συμμαθητές τους.
Χρησιμοποιούν τη φαντασία τους δημιουργικά, στη διάρκεια της συγγραφής και ενθαρρύνονται να αυτοσχεδιάσουν στη διάρκεια της μικρής τους παράστασης.
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FINAL -OPTIONAL-ACTIVITY
Με το τέλος της σχολικής χρονιάς και την ολοκλήρωση του project, στόχος μας είναι να μπορέσουμε σε συνεργασία με το Σύλλογο γονέων, είτε να αγοράσουμε permanent markers και να ζωγραφίσουμε σε λευκά μπλουζάκια την Ευρωπαικη σημαία, είτε να παραγγείλουμε σε κατάστημα την εκτύπωση των Σημαιών των Αστεριών μας, σε μπλουζάκια μέσω επεξεργασίας σε υπολογιστή.
(An English version, will follow soon…Stay tuned!)

 Mini Europe in a box: Teachers4Europe 30 State Primary School of Larissa 2015-16 on PhotoPeach

http://photopeach.com/embed/18ny1lj

Our slideshow on Smilebox

Tag Christmas gifts and bloggers!

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Tag Christmas gifts and bloggers!

This is the Tag-a-Blog Challenge going around the blogosphere! A fun chain of posts which include 11 random facts about yourself, answers to 11 questions posed by another blogger who tagged you and your 11 questions to other 11 bloggers you tag in your post.

Looks like a chain letter?! Yes, why not? It’s merry Christmas time – let’s have fun!

What are the rules? They are simple:

1. Introduce the person who tagged you.

2. Share 11 random facts about yourself.

3. Answer the 11 questions posed by the blogger who tagged you.

4. List other 11 bloggers.

5. Put your 11 questions to the bloggers you nominated.

Let me start by introducing the person who tagged me:

Alexandra Chistyakova.

 

Alexandra is a teacher of English at Moscow State University, the faculty of Physics.

However, at the moment she mainly works as a private tutor teaching kids and teenagers.

In her  blog you will find the record of her  day-to-day teaching experience, her observations and reflections, and the description of the projects she’s  working on.

11 random facts about myself:

1.I’m deeply interested in everything concerning ELT ! Actually, I am in love with my job!! I am so lucky to do the  job  I have always wished for!

2. I am also in love with life! I’d love to live till the end of…cosmos!

3.I am a very good cook! Cooking is my second passion after teaching kids! Maybe because, creativity is involved!

4. I used to cycle a lot! Not so much anymore….Riding my bicycle, makes me feel free and carefree !!

5. I am afraid of … driving cars! I hate it when I have to drive long distances especially when my whole  family are  in the car! Car accidents are really frequent in Greece! I just love flying , though!…I have never been afraid of traveling by planes !

6.I used to be very good at organic gymnastics and my most favourite athlete was Nadia Komanetsi from Romania! I used to dream that one day, I would take part in the Olympic Games and win gold medals!

7.I knew that I wanted to be either  an english teacher, or a journalist,  when I was only 11 years old! I even wrote about it ,in my diary!

8. I worked as a freelance journalist, for about 10 years both for magazines and for local TV channels!

9.I am very good at drawing and the Arts in general! I love dancing!! I can dance very well and used to be a member of a folk dancing group for many years! I also adore theatre! I used to belong to a local Drama club ! That’s why I use Drama a lot in my class, too. I can also write very well…I have written several short stories so far and some poetry! Also, short plays and a story book   for my classes!

10.I met my husband when I was 19 and we have been together since then!!

11.I LOVE MY CHILDREN and all children in general!

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Answers to ALEXANDRA’s questions:

1. What is a thing or activity that you have never done in your life before but which you would like to try out?

Tango Argentino !

2. If you have attended an ELT conference or a webinar this year, which talk or workshop was the most memorable? Why?

Ken Wilson’s  presentation at the Tesol Greece Preveza event ,last year! Stunning!

3. What are the three things or skills you have learnt this year?

Blogging, etwinning, making ends meet  with little money!

4. What would you be doing if money wasn’t an issue?

I would definitely travel all around the Globe!!

5. What is your latest fad?

Living in a different country where there is sanity and common sense!

6. What can make you freeze in admiration?

Professionalism!

7. What are your favourite songs of 2013?

RELAXATION MUSIC FOR STRESS RELIEF AND HEALING MEDITATION ! Also: ” Somedody That  I used to know” – Gotey, “Stronger” – Kelly Clarkson,”We found love” – Rihanna, “Call me maybe”- Carly Rae Jepsen.

8. What are you thankful for?

MY CHILDREN, my job, my health! Life!

9. What books have you read in 2013 which you would recommend?

“Sofies Verden” by Jostein Gaarder, “You can heal your life” by Louise L. Hay.

10. What will you remember the year of 2013 for?

For the effects of the terrible financial crisis in my country,on all of us! For all the happy moments I shared with my family and students!

11. If you could choose, where would you live? Why?

Either in  LONDON because, that is where I feel right at home or at  a greek island because,I love all islands and the Aegean Sea!

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And now the 11 bloggers I’m sending my questions to- hopefully you haven’t been tagged already :-)

My 11 questions to other bloggers:

1.• What are you most proud of?
2 • How will you know if you have lived a full life?
3• What is your biggest fear?
4• Who has had the greatest impact on your life?
5• If Hollywood made a movie about your life what would it be rated and who
would be the star?
6• Who is the most important person in your life?
7• If you could travel anywhere in the world where would you go?
8• If you could do anything in the world without fear of failure what would you do ?
9• If I asked your best friends your 3 best qualities what would they say?
10.If you only had six months to live what would be the top 10 things you would
do?
11• What is your biggest regret?

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A big thank you to Alexandra  for tagging me! It’s been a really fun Christmas flash-blog-mob! :)

Throwing Snowballs Instead of Throwing Heads

So honored that my blog has been…nominated for the ABC Award! Unbelievable!! Thanks, Sincerely Kate!

Sincerely Kate

Hola! In addition to being nominated for the award I originally created, Container Chronicles also nominated me a few others *throws confetti* (Since it’s December, the thought of throwing anything reminded me of the song “What’s This” from The Nightmare Before Christmas in case you were curious about the title of this blog… like my mom was.)

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Instructions:

  • 1-Select the blog(s) you think deserve the Blog Of The Year 2013 Award.
  • 2-Write a blog post and tell us about the blog(s) you have chosen– there are no minimum or maximum number of blogs required– and ‘present’ the blog(s) with their award.
  • 3-Let the blog(s) that you have chosen know that you have given them this award and share the instructions with them.
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Oh, Class!….Oh, Yes…!

I have to admit, I have become a http://www.wholebrainteaching.com addict! I find it REALLY effective in my classes! It has helped me with class management issues more that I have ever expected! One of the first steps a teacher can take , even before the introduction of the 5 class rules, is the attention getter ” Class! Yes!”

I can share the way I have been using it in my class,

Whole Brain Teaching posters, behind my desk in the classroom!

Whole Brain Teaching posters, behind my desk in the classroom!

How many times have you started class, called for your class to get quiet, only to have a few kids comply, and several others continue chatting, apparently oblivious to your request? You ask for their attention again, a bit louder. At this point you can feel your blood pressure rising, right? After all by this time they should know how to follow procedures. They have certainly been trained in procedures similar to yours for years by the time they get to you … well, depending on what age your students are.

Then why don’t they listen? Why don’t you already have their attention? You have teaching to do. They doggedly hang onto the conversations they are in, even as your voice rises …

Now you are headed into a bad mood and the darned class is only just beginning. To top it off, some of your lovely moppets are acting as though giving you their attention is a gigantic imposition. Now both you and your students are in a hostile mood, and no one has learned anything yet.

Does any of this sound familiar? If you would like to change, then read on.

The technique to consistently catch the attention of your class is simple. It is so simple, and effective that I kicked myself for not having thought of it myself years ago, and have lamented many times since the instructional time I lost for not having known this.

To get my classes’ attention I simply say ‘Class!’ and then they reply ‘Yes!’. Next is the catch, the hook that makes this fun, and gets them invested in it in a way that has them looking at me and grinning rather than continuing their conversations.

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When I say ‘Class!’ and they say ‘Yes!’ they have to say it the way I said it. If I say ‘Classity-class-class!’ they have to say ‘Yessity-yes-yes!’. If I say it loudly, they have to respond loudly. If I whisper, they respond in a whisper. They have to match my tone and intensity.

Simple, hunh? It is amazing how effective this approach is. I used to be the teacher I described above. With middle schoolers in particular it was almost impossible to get their attention. Too often, I would find myself frustrated by my students’ behavior.

Whole Brain Teaching uses a very simple and effective approach to overcome this resistance. Whole Brain Teaching injects fun back into the classroom for both you and your class.

mos2014rules

Why is the Class-Yes, in terms of brain structure, so effective?  The neo-cortex, the part of your brain behind your forehead, controls, among other things, decision making.  Think of the neo-cortex as an executive, organizing other brain areas for complex tasks.  When the teacher says, “Class!” and students respond “Yes!,” you have, in effect focused your students’ neo-cortices on what you’re going to say next.  In other words, their brain’s executives are ready to take directions from your brain’s executive.  That’s wonderful!  Your neo-cortex is the CEO of all your kids’ neo-cortices.  We call that, Teaching Heaven.

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