This week I wanted to finish up unit 1 on the colonization and the 13 colonies. However, shortened schedules due to testing get in the way. Plus, testing days are the worst – students come in either tired and zombies or wound up and crazy.
Monday – 30 minute classes – Triple Threat Throwdown
Tuesday – 30 minute classes – Triple Threat Throwdown
Wednesday – 40 minute classes – Text Quest
Thursday – 50 minute classes – Text Quest
Friday – 50 minute classes Text Quest
Monday and Tuesday
Monday with a MAP Math test is tough and tiresome – a perfect day to try something new. On EMC2Learning I found a new called the Triple Threat Showdown. Students had 60 total minutes to work as a team to show what they have learned the previous 2 weeks (colonization, Middle Passage, Triangular Trade, Columbian Exchange, Roanoke and English colonies). The goal was to win 2 out of 3 categories as a team. The categories you asked?
- Legos – build things related to content learned the previous 2 weeks and explain to me how it relates to something they learned.
- Sketchnotes – sketch and annotate content they learned.
- Apples to Apples – draw 3 cards (nouns or adjectives) and relate/connect each card to something you learned.
This game sparked some engagement in 505 – it was unbelievable the creations, connections, and sketch note ideas the students were creating. When we first started this, I wished their connections and explanations were a bit more detailed. As each student showed me and/or told me about their connections it provided me with an opportunity to give feedback. The feedback from me really helped students perfect how to speak and write about the content.
I really liked this 2 day Triple Threat Throwdown because it was a perfect fit for a 2 day shortened class period. (I’m not sharing the Triple Threat Throwdown because it’s a file from www.emc2learning.com).
With a longer class period, Wednesday was a good day to start new content. We started with a Text Quest to learn about the impact of geography on the English colonies. (I’m not sharing the Text Quest because it’s a file from www.emc2learning.com).
Some people get caught up in the fact that students need to know and label ALL of the 13 colonies. Yes, it’s good to know stuff, but I don’t waster much time doing that. Instead, I randomly use a 13 colonies Blooket game as a side competition during the Text Quest. What is the Text Quest?
The Text Quest came from EMC 2 Learning. Basically, students are placed on 3-4 teams that compete in 2 rounds every class period. The teams are playing for 1st through 4th place, every round, every class period.
Round 1 – I had teams debate for 5 minutes about what happened to the lost colony of Roanoke. Teams submitted their responses through Socrative. Socrative is a tool I used to use all the time, stopped using it, and now it’s back in my life again. I love how students/teams can submit responses to short answer questions and you can hide the names and judge teams 1st through 4th without any bias.
Teams submitted responses, I read them word for word (spelling errors and all) and give feedback on their claims, evidence, and reasoning. The discussions students had about Roanoke were amazing. Plus, I love being to provide feedback in real time.
Round 2 – Students worked within their groups to do a colony sort. I used the Categorizing the Colonies from Mr. Roughton’s website. Students had 25 minutes to create their own categories for the 13 colonies.
Some groups sorted by population size while others sorted by agriculture vs. manufacturing. Each group wanted to know the right answer, and I replied, “There are no wrong or right answers, just better answers.”
At the end of this activity, students did a really great job of working together and creating categories to better understand the colonies. The winning teams were chosen by me based on a completed product, simple/general categories, and a good explanation of what they could learn about the colonies based on the categories they created.
The Text Quest continued on Thursday with another set of 2 rounds. This time our focus was on the geography of the colonial regions.
Round 1 – For this round I had teams debate this question, “Which colonial region would the worst to live in?” Students had great discussions and submitted their responses through Socrative.
When judging this round I was looking at their claims for improvement from the previous days feedback. My main feedback on writing claims is, “Stop using pronouns when writing claims. Get the point and state your opinion.” I was also looking at evidence used from the Colony Sort papers.
Round 2 – I used an Annotation Scramble in round 2 so students could read our upcoming text and make connections to it. Students worked in groups, on one Google Doc, with the same article linked to our upcoming Cyber Sandwich. Students had 15 minutes to make as many connections (annotations) as possible to this text on colonial regions I received from Megan Ferne (@MeganFerne). My goal with this assignment was to have students connect with a cut and dry article about colonies – let’s face it, colonies aren’t that exciting. Here are the connections they made:
- Text to Text
- Text to Self
- Text to World
- Unknown words
I judged this round based on every group member making a connection, the quality of connections, and the amount of annotations.
We did a bit of time left, so I busted out a Blooket about identifying the 13 colonies and tied 5 extra team points to it for the overall winner and 5 extra team points for the most correct questions.
Today we moved into the Cyber Sandwich portion of the Text Quest. The article annotated by students the previous day was the same article today. I love to have students work with a text multiple times (even though they don’t realize it). However, today I broke the article into 3 sections (New England, Middle, and Southern) because it would be an easier load to handle. It worked out really well. Instead of a summary at the end of the Cyber Sandwich, I had students create an infographic comparing the geographies of the colonial regions.
Round 1 – Students had 25 minutes to work together on the Cyber Sandwich. I encouraged them to read their section and takes notes for 10 minutes. Then they should spend 15 minutes designing the infographic. I walked around the room and gave some feedback, but, for the most part, I let them do their thing. Students came up with some amazing work in 25 minutes explaining how geography impacted the way of life in the colonies.
Students submitted their infographics and I projected them on the board. I used this time to give feedback and fill in missing gaps of information. I judged the infographics based on the quality of information, creativity, and organization.
Between giving the feedback and doing or Friday check in, I missed the opportunity to do a Fast and Curious Quizizz after the Cyber Sandwich. I wish I had 10 extra minutes. However,m one class got to do the Fast and Curious and raised their class average from a 49% to and 80% over 2 days.
Overall, it was a good week. I was a bit mad at myself that I didn’t fit the fast and curious quiz in more because I like for students to see growth and learning. Sometimes the rounds and work seem a bit rushed, but I’m fine tuning as I go. Plus, as students gets used to Eduprotocols and the timer, it will get better!