Pencil-free activities?

Discussion in 'Fourth Grade' started by kandb435, Dec 20, 2007.

  1. kandb435

    kandb435 Rookie

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    Dec 20, 2007

    Our county has proposed that we have one entire instructional day where pencils are never used. In fact, we are not allowed to use any writing utensils. I have a couple of ideas for educational activities, but know you guys are very creative! Does anyone have any ideas?
     
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  3. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    It sounds fun at first, than it just sounds stressful. They can at least write their names on what ever they do?

    What are you studying?
    You could do some sort of paper machia project: planets, or animals.

    Do a reading time (like someone on here did the kids wear pjs and brought blankets). Than you could have them make clay sculptures of their favorite part or character in the book.

    You could have a movie making day. Have them do a book report prier to that day. Than they can have some props and you can video tape them.

    Have them write plays earlier than they can act them out? Or you could just do Reader's Theater.
     
  4. kandb435

    kandb435 Rookie

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    Thanks for the ideas! Thanks to my wonderfully unorganized principal, we were just told yesterday and the day is in two weeks! We have next week off and come back Jan. 2- the pencil free day is Jan. 4! Not much time to plan! We are studying flowers and their parts, Revolutionary War, multiplication, plural possessives... :) Thanks again! I will have to add your ideas to my plans!
     
  5. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    You can play around the world with multiplication (is that allowed any more?).

    Act out part of the war?

    Have parents help and make a dinner that looked like they would have had during the war.

    Do the flower activity where you put it in food coloring and water. Than watch it change color. I faguely remember doing this when I was in school.

    I can't think of anything else.
     
  6. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

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    Have the kids make board games about the facts that need to be learned on bull. board paper. Then trade with another group and play it. You might make a template on what they need to cover in their games. You could have one group do a science game, one a social studies, and one an English game. You could have one make a memory math facts game.

    They can build multiplication patterns on graph paper for the facts that they need to learn.

    One year I called the florist and asked for old flowers to dissect and we drew the parts. We also used old carnations to paint with. They turned out cool. You could also use the flowers (depending on how they look) to make bouquets for the specialists.
     
  7. kandb435

    kandb435 Rookie

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    We do play around the world sometimes. Even though we are working on 2 digit X 2 digit, I might have to put that on hold for this day. I have to agree that is sounded great at first, but I quickly realized that it would be a tremendous amount of planning! I wish he would have given us a little (actually, A LOT) more notice!

    Thank you so much for your help! I will share your ideas with the other 4th grade teacher! :)
     
  8. kandb435

    kandb435 Rookie

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    The games and flower ideas sound great! I bet the kiddos would love to paint with flowers! I would enjoy watching them disect the flowers. It might really help them understand the parts a little easier than looking at pictures in their books and the pictures I have shown on the overhead.
     
  9. heart4kids

    heart4kids Rookie

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    They could find possessive nouns in magazines and newspapers and cut them out. Then they could glue them to poster board in 2 categories--Singular Poss. /Plural Possessive.
     
  10. kandb435

    kandb435 Rookie

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    Ooh! I like that idea too! I knew I would get some creative responses from the teachers on this website! :)
     
  11. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    I like a lot of these ideas too. I wish I was still teaching k-8. Than I could do some of them.
     
  12. ABall

    ABall Fanatic

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    I love foam shapes, you can do so many things with them, from simple crafts to matching, sorting colors and shapes etc...

    turn round white coffee filters into snowflakes.

    play simon says and I spy.

    cooking activity (decorate cookies or make a simple fruit salad)

    read stories.

    toss bean bags onto numbers and do adding

    play store or make up a puppet show.

    make puppets.

    get a head start on Mother's Day.
     
  13. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

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    Here is my day... I'll plan it for you!

    Math... play a game with a deck of cards. One deck for each pair. They put down four cards, and then they try to find a way to make the biggest product with two two digit numbers. (have them remove the 10's, Jack, queen, kings. Ace is one) Can they write on slates or with markers? They might need to solve the problem on paper. Anyway, it plays a little like war. The person with the highest answer keeps the cards. Have some math stations with a few games if you want.

    If you have board games, there might be a good board game like Iguana Factor they can play.

    Science- dissect flowers. Have the kids each take apart a flower and glue it to a large piece of paper. Then they can label the parts the next day. Have several flowers and then have the kids compare what each part looks like in different flowers.

    Social Studies- I liked the idea of cooking food they would have eaten during the revolutionary war, but that might be too hard. How about making butter in a jar? Do a lesson on the home lives of people during that time and how much work everything was. We read a book when we were studying that (one of the My America books) and the kids became facinated about the way she described doing laundry. I brought in tubs and washboards and had the kids wash clothes the old fashioned way. It was really fun!

    Spelling- have them make skits with the plural possessives. For example, a skit about fox turning into foxes, or person into people. Have about 4 kids in a group and let them make a skit.

    Why exactly is the principal doing this day? It sounds fun but a bit of an exreme way to get more hands on activties.
     
  14. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    For the two-column multiplication, what about this? Make up a master with several sets of digits from 0 to 9. Hand a copy to each kid; let the kids cut all the digits out so they've got a slew of slips or cards each of which has a single digit on it, then they lay out the multiplication problem using the cards, and they use the cards to show all the steps including regrouping. For example, if they're doing 27 x 14, we know that 7 x 4 = 28, but we also know that there can only be one card in the ones place and that it has to be the 8, so the 2 then goes above the tens places.
     
  15. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    Great ideas TG and MissFroggy. Man I am missing the older kids right now.:D:D

    Of course if I was with the older kids than I would miss the little kids. Sigh. I wish my school from last year was closer to home.
     
  16. Steph-ernie

    Steph-ernie Groupie

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    Can they write on the board? We do math games where I split the class into two teams and a representative from each team comes up to the board. I give the 2 students a math problem. The first one to complete it correctly and put the cap on the marker and the marker on the tray gets a point for their team. My class loves it. (I call the game chalkdown, becasue back when I was in school I had a teacher who played this game with actual chalk having to be down on the tray before the point could be given. I always explain the origins of the name to my class when I introduce it the first time, and explain that "markerdown" just doesn't have the same ring to it!)
     
  17. ~mrs.m~

    ~mrs.m~ Comrade

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    This week I taught my sixth graders how to fold origami cranes in conjunction with the story called Sadako and the Thousand Cranes... I now have many students hooked on it (at least temporarily) and loving folding them. Good luck with your day!
     
  18. uclalum

    uclalum Groupie

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    For possessives, you could have the kids paint words on construction paper and add macaroni where an apostrophe would be placed.
     
  19. wvteacher

    wvteacher New Member

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    Our school is doing the same on Jan. 9. We plan on playing a lot of math games with playing cards, counters, overhead, etc. Mainly multiplication games, like Salute. We're going to utilize Unitedstreaming videos for Science. In reading, students will be reenacting scences from the story. For attendance, we are going to take a picture of the kids (in an array) and email it to the office. I think it will be fun.
     
  20. kandb435

    kandb435 Rookie

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    Jan 10, 2008

    Our day got moved to January 11th (tomorrow), but not until last Friday. lol My principal is an unrganized mess! :eek: He has also changed it to a half day, which makes it a little easier.

    I have decided that rather than giving a Reading test, the kiddos are going to (today) choose a part of their story to turn into a newscast. They will act it out for the rest of the class tomorrow. We're going to play some Math games (love chalkdown, but can't write on the board either- never had a teacher call it that, but I do remember playing it!), and do a cooperation activity. I give the students random materials (whatever I want to get rid of out of my cabinet! :lol: ) yarn, glue, scissors, tape, construction paper, etc. They have to work in a group to make something with their materials. All groups get the exact same materials, but they are "non-renewable"! If they cut the string, they are stuck with that length. I don't care what they make, but the entire group must agree and work together. :)

    Thanks again for all of the great ideas!! :D:thanks:
     
  21. wvteacher

    wvteacher New Member

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    Jan 10, 2008

    We had Pencil-Free day yesterday. It was wonderful. Tiring, but wonderful. The best activity was our children doing a weather broadcast. There were anchors, on-site reporters, meteorologists, cue card holders, and directors. We used a powerpoint for background maps and sites. I took pictures and videotaped their presentations. Then, a meteorologist from our local tv station spoke to the students for about an hour and a half. He was fantastic. He came on short notice, too!
    For math, we made a Human Lattice Multiplication problem. (Everyday Math) We taped off a lattice grid on the floor. The students were given construction paper with a number on it. Each number was part of the problem and solution. We then took pictures of each step. We will put those pictures into Moviemaker so others can see the steps in lattice multiplication. The kids really enjoyed it. All in all, it was a great day.
     

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