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I, myself, am in need of some fresh ideas as I am in the midst of "testing season" as I like to call it.
Our new state testing began yesterday, April 13, and is scheduled to end on May 22 (with make-ups). That's 6 weeks of odd schedules, long hours in "holding" until all tests are complete, sharing classrooms, and middle school kids with testing fever.
Well, I thought about going all Charlotte Gilman and becoming part of the wallpaper but then the wallpaper got me thinking... I could just be a bit more crafty...
We are meant to use these consumable test prep books made especially for our new state tests. I cannot imagine using these for 130 minutes straight while the other grade level tests so my plan is to read a story, answer the questions, go over the questions and then make a related craft. After all, this is the one thing we never get to do in middle school anymore so this is my chance!
The first story in the book is from Jules Verne's Five Weeks in a Balloon. So we are going to make hot air balloon pictures!
I found this great template for hot air balloons for free!
I will ask students to write the adventurous things they want to do or places they want to go in the sections on the balloon and then I am going to get out my water colors and we are going to paint while I play classical music.
I used to do a painting project like this years ago with middle schoolers and it was the most relaxing, therapeutic, and dare I say cathartic experience ever. I hope I can re-create it! Or maybe I'll just replicate it if this goes well! :)
After making the hot air balloons, we will make text structure collages in teams/groups. Each team will find pictures to represent the 5 common text structures. We'll present them and tie them in with our prep books.
Yes, I think crafts will help us prepare us for our tests without numbing our minds!
Thanks for stopping by!