Reaching the end of the pre-unit of Magic Book 2, revising the letters is going to be pursued in a different way this year! In an attempt to combine learning with playing at the same time, we are going to introduce the Alphabet Puzzle Cards that have been designed to be used in different ways: as a puzzle that can be completed individually at school or at home, as a game to be played in pairs or groups with a time challenge – if applicable, or as a competition among individual learners, pairs or groups!
Having designed the alphabet puzzle cards on a document, the steps to be followed are very easy! First, we print the cards on plain paper or cardboard:
Then, we place each card on the transparent sticker sheet that is usually used for book cover protection and we cut:
After that, we cut each card on the lines:
Time to play, learn, revise and assess through a brain-teasing activity and, as each third-grader is meant to get his/her own set in a small box or bag this week, there’s more cutting ahead!
Physical distancing and long distance teaching have brought forward the best of Greek teachers who seem to have become Web Tool experts in just a few days and struggle to do their best for their learners! In an attempt to create presentable, interactive, educational and entertaining Easter collections for all my classes this year, Thinglink was the web tool that came first to my mind, as it gives teachers the opportunity to integrate links of useful videos and tasks, as well as interactive activities they have probably created themselves using other Web Tools (like LearningApps in my case)! In this post you will find all my Easter Fun collections in one place and you are free to use them in you feel that they meet your learners’ needs!
It has been a long while since I’ve posted anything on my blog or facebook page, but I’ve been busy sharing my time among family, work and my personal needs (not sharing it equally, unfortunately, but still doing my best in all areas!). To be honest, I have really missed this communicative, social and creative aspect of my job!
So, have you finished with the 1st term tests at school, or are you taking advantage of the last days of the term, like I am? Last night I finished working on the 1st term test for my 3rd graders and, as it took me a while to organise and edit, I thought it would be nice to share it with all of you that are also burning the midnight oil preparing and correcting handouts and tests these days! We have currently finished Lessons 1 and 2 from Unit 1 in Magic Book 2, so, if you want to save this document and use it either as a test, or as a revision handout, please, leave a comment with your email address under the following blog post and I’ll send it to you as soon as possible!
Apart from the revision test, I have also prepared a task for early-finishers, as I have always had learners who complete the tests almost as soon as they get their copy! Therefore, you will aslo get a copy of that worksheet which can also be attached to the main test as an extra/bonus task – it is up to you, your learners’ competence level and the time you wish to spend on test writing!
I really hope you will find this useful and time-saving!
Flashcards in the Greek public school third grade can be used in numerous ways and they can prove to be life-saviors with early-finishers! During the lesson, we normally use them to revise the letters of the alphabet that we have already learnt and introduce the new ones, along with the new vocabulary that accompanies them! Yesterday, however, we used them to revise letters and vocabulary in a fun way!
To be more precise, we divided the whiteboard in two parts. Each part had the same number of flashcards. The learners were supposed to match the picture with the word! The learner who was the first to finish correctly the matching task, won some stickers!
These flashcards were edited, printed and laminated about three years ago and were based on the alphabet vocabulary presented in the Greek public school third grade material Magic Book 1! We use them every year and, when we finish with the alphabet, we put them up on the wall for both educational and decorative reasons!
If you are an English Language teacher, you surely are familiar with the “Simon says …” game! However, our 3rd grade course book invites us to play “Pinocchio says …”, as Pinocchio is our Unit 4 hero, in an attempt to engage us in a fun, enjoyable activity for vocabulary revision!
Please, enjoy this video of the recorded “Pinocchio says…” activity and try to focus on the learners’ faces (trying not to judge the sound of my recorded voice – I actually sound so different if you meet me in person!)!
Don’t you feel excited when somebody brings you a present you had never expected at all and you could not believe you would like, or need so much? Well, this appears to be accurately descriptive of my current relationship with the interactive notebook approach! It’s like a new colourful, fun-filled toy that everybody likes to play with and you, the teacher who has prepared it, know that it is not just entertaining! It is meant to help others learn in a more engaging, attractive and interactive manner and you (will) love every minute of its designing and crafting!
After trying to help a learner with demonstratives, it is time to play and learn with my daughter, who has been a bit confused with object pronouns and possessive adjectives use and expressed her desire to have an interactive notebook, like my niece’s! Here is how she has been presented with the grammar rules:
After reading and playing with the rules, she moves to the next pages that have big flowers with petals that can move! Reading the sentence in the middle, she makes her own, complete sentences by using the correct pronoun or adjective! Then, she checks if she did well by flipping the flower petals!
Apart from attributing a colourful and playful atmosphere to her notebook, my daughter loved the fact that she enjoyed grammar practice this much and has expressed her desire to add more pages like that! Having tried the interactive notebook method in only two cases this far, it has been noted that it initially appears to give the teachers the opportunity to reflect on their students’ learning styles. Additionally, it seems to allow teachers to evaluate and analyze their learners’ understanding of new concepts, giving them ample grounds to modidy and accommodate their teaching accordingly. Finally, the fact that learners are not involved in the actual designing and crafting, brings up the element of surprise during the lesson and allows more time for grammar introduction and practice for the individual learner.
Have you ever had one of those days during which everybody in class has understood the grammar taught (even commented on how easy it has been), but one or some of your learners seem unable to put it into practice, as they do not remember when to use what? Well, in the public school context, cases like that are normally approached during the break, where learners can be guided individulally and introduced to various ways that will assist their learning (graphs that help them remember, course book pages that present grammar, worksheets for extra practice, links to related online interactive games, etc). If we are lucky, the learners that need our guidance stay at school until 4pm, like we do, and we can work on their problematic areas at their own pace, through role plays, songs, even crafts that will make their learning life easier and more pleasant!
Having said (and done) all these things, right when you think you are a cool teacher that helps her learners get better at English, you see something cooler than what you have been doing all this time! In the afore mentioned challenging case, the cooler approach seems to be far more attractive and bears an attractive name: an interactive notebook! Have you seen these wonderful, colourful, flippable, removable notebook pages that not only present things in English, but also allow you to interact with them and practice? Google search “interactive notebooks” and you will be flooded with articles on their theoretical background, templates, printable patterns and exemplary ideas that will blow your (and your learners’) minds!
Having read all about them and trusting colleagues who have repeatedly used them (Aphro Gkiouris, for instance, who has been a warm supporter of this approach), the first attempt took place at home, as an experiment, exploiting my niece’s aversion towards demonstratives (this, that, these, those). Although she had clearly understood the difference among them, she had been having difficulty in using the correct demostrative while producing the target language! That was when she was invited to take advantage of the … super powers of her own notebook!
Having prepared cardboard cut-outs and printed everything we needed, I glued everything on her notebook which looked like that:
She had the opportunity to visualize the rules by … opening the purple windows:
When we opened the lilac envelope, she found colourful pieces of cardboard paper, showing an object or objects with hands pointing at them from near or far away from them:
And, then, she could play and interact, by placing each object in the correct envelope, based on its number and distance from the hand:
Answering potential questions that may arise after this presentation it is worth noting that: * Yes, it was time-consuming to prepare, but paper-crafting was fun to do, as my daughter kindly offered to help! * No, it does not cost a lot, as cardboard paper and glue are not expensive. If you do not have a printer, you can always employ your art skills which may give a more personal style to the end-product! * Yes, she got everything right, and, no, we did not have to refer to the grammar rules again! * Yes, she loved it! She clearly stated it and also expressed her willingness to go home and play some more with it! * Yes, it seems addictive! I cannot stop thinking on ways I could adopt this approach in a public primary school classroom with about 20 learners per class (a highly challenging task, all ideas and suggestions are welcomed!!!)
Με μεγάλο ενθουσιασμό και χαρά ξεκινήσαμε για πρώτη φορά φέτος στο Δημοτικό Σχολείο Σούρπης να μαθαίνουμε αγγλικά με τους μαθητές της Α΄ και Β΄ Τάξης! Αρχικά, μιλήσαμε για το … τι είναι τα Αγγλικά κι έπειτα γιατί είναι τόσο σημαντικό να τα μάθουμε! Παρακολουθώντας την ακόλουθη παρουσίαση, συνειδητοποιήσαμε όλοι μαζί ότι ήδη μιλάμε αγγλικά και ότι πολλές αγγλικές λέξεις προφέρονται με τρόπο που μας είναι εύκολο να καταλάβουμε τι σημαίνουν!
Ήδη μιλάμε αγγλικά, λοιπόν, αλλά τώρα το κάνουμε όπως οι Άγγλοι! Χεράκια μπροστά στο στόμα, βγάζουμε αέρα στους ήχους που είπαμε, δεν ακουμπάμε τη γλώσσα στον ουρανίσκο όταν λέμε το ‘ρ’ το αγγλικό και … φύγαμε για εξάσκηση από το σπίτι!
The Greek carnival is usually celebrated at the end of winter and the beginning of spring, Halloween, though, is celebrated on October 31st! There are major differences between the Greek carnival celebration and Halloween celebration, but there is surely one thing they have in common: dressing-up!
In terms of dressing-up, Halloween seems to be all about spooky costumes, whereas the Greek carnival appears to fulfil our dream of transforming into anything we desire! Whether it is Halloween or Carnival, every year, we, teachers, try to find crafts we can do with our learners in class! Here you will find an assortment of sites that abound in crafts, decorations, coloring pages, costume ideas, treats recipes and printables! Have fun with your learners at school and don’t forget your kids at home! You can have so much fun with them!
ActivityVillage (Skeletons, witches, bats and cats, pumpkins of all sorts, candy corn, monsters and ghosts too, so with well over 80 craft ideas here you should find something that is just the right amount of spooky for you!)
AllFreeCrafts (Here you can find crafts and decorations, Halloween recipes, party ideas and Halloween games, Halloween costumes and makeup, as well as printables!)
FamilyCorner.com (Crafts, decorations, recipes … you can try them at home with your kids, too!)
FreeKidsCrafts.com (Halloween printables, recycled crafts, costume ideas and food crafts!)
CraftBits.com (Halloween crafts, project ideas, decorations and wreaths!)
English Exercises is a website full of exercises to practise English online. The exercises have been submitted by English teachers from all over the world and they are categorized as VOCABULARY and GRAMMAR exercises. Your learners will have the opportunity to practice English developing thus their vocabulary, grammar and listening skills (a lot of the activities include songs and videos!).
Here you will find a collection of online word games, activities and quizzes that can help children learn and practise English vocabulary related to Christmas in a fun way. Also, we offer a variety of printable exercises and activities for young ESL learners, including Christmas word games, picture quizzes, vocabulary tests, board games and crafts.