Our class go swimming 2 days a week, and I have found that trying to attempt maths class after they get back is somewhat challenging. The students are hot and tired, and the last they thing they really want is to be stuck at a desk doing maths. So I decided we should take it easy this time around and focus more on fun instead. My mentor suggested maybe some rotational activities, an idea which I loved.
I managed to find all manner of things to do, and had to narrow to down to 4 things which were age and ability appropriate.
So we ended up with:
- 1 gross-motor/bodily learning activity – playing Simon Says on large 2-dimensional shape carpet tiles on the floor,
- 1 fine-motor/tactile activity – using playdough and paddle-pop sticks to make polygons,
- 1 visual/tactile board game – colouring in the shapes on an A4 picture of a robot, as we rolled the shapes with an over-sized foam die, sort of Robot Bingo,
- 1 visual/interactive online activity – a game called Shape Lab, where students identify the shapes needed for the scientist to build wacky-looking robots.
(The touch function of the IWB wasn’t connected so I just projected it onto the IWB, and controlled it from the laptop.)
I sorted the students into 4 groups, and they spent about 10 minutes on each activity. They had a ball!
Being a special needs classroom, I wasn’t sure how well they would go with the transition between rotations, but they behaved remarkably well, and seemed to respond really well to the visual and kinaesthetic activities too.
Some things I would change are making sure I have it set up earlier, and make sure I let all the teacher aides know what’s going on first, as I didn’t explain it terribly well (still being a bit nervous and flustered).
But all in all, we all had a great time, maths was practiced, ICT and PE were all included, and best of all, we got through most of the class without any major issues.
Lesson to self: variety is key! And don’t forget to have fun!