Technology has made teachers’ lives easier, but back to school means paperwork that must be filled out before the data is entered into the system. I think we can all agree that at the beginning of each new semester or new year, teachers need a little time during each class period to work on paperwork in order to get up to speed.
Just letting students sit and be idle is never a good idea and busy work is a waste of our students’ minds, so teachers need activities that are fun and challenging to keep students engaged while teachers do the detail work that cannot be avoided.
Back to School Means Paperwork For The Class
I started each new year with an activity that took 4 days for students to complete and helped them get to know one another. It also helped me access their writing skill level, and learn more about them.
You can find the activity here.
Here are two other activities that I used with my students. They enjoyed doing these, and at the same time they were using their higher order thinking skills and not just doing “busy work.”
Take a look at these products and see if they can help you, too.
One of the best ways to improve one’s writing is to cut extraneous words from essays, letters, emails, or manuscripts.
In fact, Twitter is a great place for people to learn to practice reducing long, convoluted, rambling sentences into 140 character tweets.
But even sentences short enough to be Tweets can be improved upon.
This free exercise allows students to practice reducing 10 sentences into shorter, more concise statements.
It works best if students work in pairs to figure out this word play puzzle. Click Here
Challenge your students’ minds with this fun Higher Order Thinking Skills Classification Exercise. Students must classify a group of items according to their general category, consider which one of the items is different from the others in some subtle way, remove it, and then determine the specific category that remains. There are twenty sets of items to classify, and the answers are provided. Click Here
We all know that back to school means paperwork. We cannot avoid it, and we must do it before our classes can run smoothly. Why not challenge your students with a few HOTS activities and to warm them up and prepare them for a successful school year?
Finally, here is the new Grades 6-12 ELA and Humanities FREE eBook from a group of high school teachers on Teachers Pay Teachers. I was happy to be included in the book. Also, there are many tips and resources highlighted in this resource for you! Back to School Social Studies eBook for Grades 6-12
Charlene Tess taught English and creative writing to high school students and adults for thirty-five years. She is listed in Who's Who in America. She has worked as an educational consultant helping other teachers use her grammar workbook, Simple Steps to Sentence Sense, and as a creative writing teacher and freelance editor.
After retiring from teaching in public schools, she has devoted her time to writing fiction and teaching creative writing to adults. Her novels, The Greatest Gift, The Cowboy’s Treasure, The Rebecca Bride, Accidental Angel, and The Van Winkle Bride are available in the Kindle Store at Amazon.com. She has also published short fiction and articles in magazines and in short story collections.
Her highly acclaimed nonfiction books, Simple Steps to Sentence Sense, are being used by students all over the United States and in several foreign countries.
Charlene and her husband Jerry spend their free time traveling to promote her books and visiting their two daughters and their three grandsons.
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