An Essential ingredient to
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Add "smell" to your session.
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Activate the smell sense to
First thing in the morning or after each break it is good to get those brains ready to learn with a warm-up activity.
Most of the time this can be done with a quick verbal quiz to review what has been covered so far or you might want to check what your learners already know about your next topic.
MISSING A PIECE?
Find a picture relevant to you teaching topic. Have one picture (the same picture!) per group. Cut each picture up as a simple jigsaw (but each jigsaw should be cut up slightly differently) and put in envelope so as to not accidentally mix up the different jigsaws.
Once all pictures are cut up and in separate envelopes, take one random piece from the first envelope and swap with a piece from the second etc. So each each envelope now has a piece that will not fit. Hand out an envelope to each group and ask them to complete the jigsaw. Wait and see what happens when they can't complete it. Are they getting frustrated? Giving up? Asking the other group if something is wrong with their puzzle?
Reflect back on this activity, based on what you wanted to achieve (teamwork, communication skills, what does the jigsaw represent etc.)
Using a scrabble game or a box of Anagram game letters, give each group a good handful of letters and ask each group to relate each letter to something they have learned.
This can be a group activity where by you check progress and understanding with each individual group. You will be able to pick up any areas of learning that are missing or have not quiet consolidated.
PAPERBALL OR PAPER PLANE
Give each person a coloured piece of paper, half the size of A4 is sufficient. Each person is to write a question on it. You can decide what it is, for example:
For this activity, it is essential that you have range of Kooshballs or any other type of balls or novelty soft toys that can safely be thrown around the room between your learners. Your first question will be to every one in the group and throw it to the person who knows the answer. If answered correctly the Kooshball will be thrown to another person in the group etc etc. It will only come back to you once everybody has had a turn, or you run out of questions.
By having students throw the ball to each other, it means you can not be accused of picking on a person with a particular difficult question. Get your Kooshball today and get the ball rolling.
Split your group into small groups of 3 or 4.
Allocate each group a flip chart or whiteboard around the room. The aim of the activity is to write down as many words, statements or whatever is appropriate for your topic. The hard part is that the groups are not allowed to double up, so one or two people in each group will need to keep an eye on what the other groups are writing down. This can be really hard so leave this warm up until you have covered a lot of content and you really want your learners to think back as what has been covered so far.
Read CHEAT 2 for reviewing ideas.
This is the same as above but make sure all groups have a different colour pen to write with.
Give them one minute as a group to come up with as many words as possible. After one minute they all move to the next groups flip chart with their pen and give them another minute to add any additional words etc. Keep moving till the groups are dried up. It is essential that after CHEAT or CHEAT TWO you review what has been written down.
This is always fun and has already been given so many variations. Prepare Sticky labels in advance, one for each learner and write a word/item relevant to what you have been teaching.
Stick a label on their back and ask them to walk around the room, only asking questions that can be answered with yes or no. (closed questions, ie - Am I a square item?)
Anybody that guesses correctly - who or what they are, will then need to sit down. Now change the closed questions to open questions (questions starting with Who, what,where,why,when-What colour am I?) but each particular question can only be answered with ONE word.
Once this is getting hard they are now allowed to ask probing questions (You said I am green and square, is green the only colour I have?). This activity is fantastic if you have a formula they need to remember or certain words/statements etc.
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