The social studies teacher on my team asked, “What site do you use to get your grouping ideas?”
To be honest, I’m not sure. I know that I subscribe to professional magazines, newsletters, and blogs. I also spend more time than I would like to admit looking for good ideas on Twitter and Pinterest. 🙂 However, I can not point to one single place where all of my ideas come from. Many are simply things that I come up with on the fly. Others are hybrids of ideas that I’ve read about.
If I accidentally share one of your ideas…Please remember – imitation is the most sincere form of flattery.
1. Index Cards – I love index cards. They can be used in so many ways. I like to hand them out at the door with instructions posted on the board. “Use the words/phrases/symbols on the cards to group yourselves in a logical way.” What I write on them depends on how I want to group the students:
- pairs: synonyms/antonyms; cause & effect; riddles and answers; terms & definitions; state & capitol; picture & metaphor
- small groups: lines from characters; quotes related to themes we are studying; characters and character traits; math problems with same solutions; colors
- ordered lines: “I have…who has” (see post from Jan. 28); events related to unit of study; order of steps in solving an equation; order of the planets, events in a story
2. Playing Cards – Uno, Old Maid, regular playing cards…It really doesn’t matter. There is just something so intriguing to students when you stand at the door saying, “Pick a card. Any card.”
3. Dominoes – Practically indestructible. One reason these are great is that you can group by: number of dots; color; sum of dots or many other ways.
4. Stickers – Kids love them. Group by type, color, size, etc. An added bonus is the opportunity for a quick hello with every student.
These are just a few ideas. I would love to hear your suggestions.