Thursday, 18 February 2016

Maths, differentiation and active participation...

Friday 19th February 2016

Maths, differentiation and active participation are three of my main interests within the classroom. I am a strong believer in all children being challenged, yet actively engaged throughout the whole lesson and I have developed a variety of strategies to ensure that this happens each and every day. In my update this morning, I will be sharing two key strategies that can work in any classroom regardless of the subject or age of the children. I use both strategies daily and they also promote concentration and help with classroom management.

Lolly Sticks:

I am sure some of you may be aware of this simple, yet effective strategy to ensure mass active participation. In a cup near the front of the classroom I have 16 lolly sticks with a child's name on each one. The teacher is to ask a question and allow 3-8 seconds for the children to think about the answer before the teacher chooses a lolly stick and then that child shares the answer. This is great for random selection, but it is vital that all the children have time to think about the answer, as that is the 'active' part of this strategy. I also use differentiated lolly sticks that are different colours. E.g. I choose a blue lolly stick for a more difficult question during Maths, as my higher ability students will have their name on a blue lolly stick. I have three pots of lolly sticks that I use regularly. One for general questioning, one for Maths and one for topic based learning.

Random Questioning:

This is a fun, interactive game that promotes active participation and can be easily differentiated. It would be great for an observation! On each slide a question appears on the screen and all the children have to think about the answer. After 6-8 seconds a name flashes across the screen and that child should shout out the answer. The children love this game and you should all give it a go! Tip - Repeat a child's name, so that they never know when their name will appear. It will be one of the best Maths warm ups you will ever do!

I have used this mainly for Maths, although it could be easily adapted to suit any subject. The answer from the previous question is displayed at the top of the next slide. 

This resource takes around 20 minutes to make and can be edited to use again and again....

All my planning and resources can be found at:

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Global Teacher

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