Tag Archives: predictions

I Love a Mash-up!

Which famous scene? Which famous works of art? What are the famous soliloquies from this scene? What are their significance?

The ’tiles’ are students’work from all four core content classes.

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The Power of Predicting

On Friday, I  attended an NHASCD presentation by Dr. Judy Willis Brain Friendly Strategies for Igniting Student Engagement and Learning was an overview of how the brain takes in, stores and uses information with specific classroom applications for teachers.

Her presentation was amazing!  One thing that I found particularly interesting was that extra Dopamine is released when accurate predictions are made.  She recommends using prediction as much as possible to sustain attention.

Although I frequently use prediction, her explanation of the neuroscience adds a new twist to what I’ve previously done.  She suggests that students make predictions which they are allowed to revise as a lesson/unit progresses.  She says that the brain needs to find out if its prediction is correct, so it is motivated to pay attention to find out.

It is important to be explicit so that the brain is fully aware that predictions are being made, and then reveal clues along the way to support revision of the prediction.  Interesting pictures, riddles, Animoto commercials, student-friendly written subtopics are all ways to engage the brain in making predictions.

Now I know why the kids liked the Christmas Sock clues so much.  I can’t wait to try new ways to incorporate more predicting in my lessons.


The Twelve Days of Christmas Socks

photo 5 (5)

Each of the last twelve school days before vacation, I sang the next verse in the Christmas sock song and showed my students my socks.  The deal was that they had to have finished the lesson before I would sing.

I put a symbol on my board each day to remind me what socks I was wearing.  To my surprise, the kids would immediately check the ‘sock board’ as they entered  and begin guessing what kind of socks I was wearing.  They would beg for a sneak peek at the socks, but I would never show them until the lesson was over.  Each time I revealed my socks, there would be a mix of cheers and groans about how close their predictions were.

I always find it amazing how much 8th graders love this song.  I warn them at the beginning that my singing voice is horrible.  They always agree with me.  The funny thing is they still do ‘jazz hands’ with me for the fifth day, and join in for “aaannnndddd pink socks with Christmas lights and bows.