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Sunday, February 12, 2012

World's Easiest Token System

World's Easiest Token System

I believe I will be setting this system up in my classroom to reward good behavior! It will take the place of assigning regular jobs on a weekly basis or having to keep up reward charts, hole punch cards, "cashing in" tickets or other collectibles to the "class store", etc. Have you seen this?? You basically put chips with numbers on them. When you want to reward someone, they put a chip (token) with their number on it in a bag. You draw from the bag to choose someone for a job, treat, etc. The more chips they get to put in the bag, the more times they are drawn.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Thinking Maps

Thinking Maps: do you use them? Have you been trained in them? I love them because they were designed with brain research in mind. I was trained as a trainer (that sounds funny) but got away from them for a while in favor of the more traditional graphic organizers. What I do now is show my students the "old" way and then the Thinking Maps way that involves the same process skill. For example, we use the tree map now to organize our paragraphs for writing but we still also use story maps and webs, etc. Any time you do sorting and classifying, a tree map is a great way to show that! Some examples: types of triangles, typles of lines (can you tell we are doing a geometry unit?) We still do Venn Diagrams but we now also do double bubble for compare/contrast. Friday we did a double bubble map comparing two different 3-dimensional solids. The students have become very good at using these maps. A circle map is a great way to introduce a new story or a new skill or unit to find out what the students' background knowledge is. The Brace Map shows whole to part relationships. Have you ever considered using that for expanded notation in math? The whole number 235, for example, can be broken into parts: 200+30+5.

I am going to start taking photographs of what my students do with Thinking Maps and post them here and on Pinterest. I would love to see what your students are doing with Thinking Maps!