I want to share with y'all a great resource today that I love using in my classroom. It's called Think Outside the Box. You can find this FREE activity over at First Grade Wow. And WOW is what you will say when you visit this blog. Nancy, who writes this fabulous blog, is a fantastic teacher who loves sharing her classroom creations. As I was searching her site one day I found her Think Outside the Box activity. This activity consists of a collection of random, plain shapes. Yep, random shapes. But what they kids do with these shapes is what the end result is all about. I was intrigued and knew that I wanted to try it out with my class. So one Friday, in place of our traditional morning work, I had this activity out on my kiddo's desk when they arrived. At first glance, they really didn't know what they were supposed to do with it. Color it? Decorate it? Was it supposed to be that easy? After some gentle
prodding encouraging, I finally got most of my students to "think outside the box" and turn their plain shape into something new and totally different. For some students this task was easier than for others. I had a couple that just couldn't do it. One of my students who has struggled with reading all year long was by far the most creative when it came to this task. I wish I would have taken a picture of his very first activity to share because it was truly amazing. I made a big deal out of it and shared it with the class. After everybody saw all of the different creations, the light bulb came on and I think they all figured out that their pictures could be anything they wanted them to be, they didn't have to be the same as their neighbors. As Nancy points out on her blog, it's a great way to get that creative side of their brain going. After doing this activity several times this year with different shapes, I have to agree 100% with her.
Here are a few examples from the activity using a crescent moon shape:
girl parachuting from the sky
solar system with labels
banana man singing about peanut butter and jelly
rainbow with rain falling
hand throwing a football
I hope these pictures give you an idea of what a great activity this can be for students. It gave my students a break from the normal "everybody do it the same way" kinda work. Each student had the same shape, but what they chose to do with it was what mattered.
If you are interested in this activity, you can read more about it on Nancy's blog here. Please show her some love if you download this activity!
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Hope you all have a very blessed Easter!