Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Riddle me this - reading game & extensive practice

My JHS girls have been turning up weary & dreary of late; exam season and cold dark evenings don't help.

It's important that we do some learning, and that has become a problem lately. The class has been together for a while but one is starting to lag. Not doing homework and trying to hide behind a fringe adds to the learning lag.

Reading Riddle Maze (by Learning Resources) is a decent challenge for my learners (easier version). Students read a card with a riddle on it, and aim to reach the pictorial answer on the board, checking the reverse side when they get there. Being wrong is actually very useful; students ask each other why and then read their cards to each other - wouldn't at first when I asked!

Reading aloud, good thing or not, is a big debate. Making yourself understood is pretty much task one, and peers are a tough audience; so why not, in this context? Tasked to listen carefully, students help each other with red herrings eg more answers than one "have a tail".

For a "game" lesson my girls read non-stop for an hour, and didn't check the clock or nod off once. Me? Didn't need to say anything - nod, wink, applaud!