Sunday, May 10, 2015

Planning for 6th Grade Day

I am getting to plan for 6th Grade Day visitation this week!  I am so excited (but also a little nervous...there are so many details!!!!).  It is our opportunity to meet and greet potential students, so, of course, I want it to go off without a hitch.  I have worked on the agenda, emailed the parents of the students who are visiting, prepped our student leaders, and let the cafeteria manager know that we will have extra kiddos on campus for lunch.
Now, I am working on the details: filling in what we will do during small group time, making name tags, and props for the photo booth.

I am planning my small group details based upon ideas gleaned from a Kagan Cooperative Learning Workshop I attended last week.  The workshop was phenomenal and I found myself making notes of ideas to use throughout the day.  For an ice breaker, I am using Think-Write-RoundRobin based loosely on a personality test in The Creative Brain by Ned Herrmann.  In this low stress activity, students will think about a shape with which they identify and write down a brief explanation of why they picked the figure.  They will share their written answers with the other 4 members in the group. (When we played at the workshop, everyone in my group (except for me) was a triangle!)
There are no wrong answers and each shape is associated with positive attributes.  So, what does each one say about a person's personality?
To help energize the group and get people laughing, we are using Kagan's "Everyone's It!" game from the book Silly Sports & Goofy Games.  Over the last month, I bought 3 no props - fun games type books to get ideas for this visit.  Kagan's book was by far the best!
To play: 1. Players spread out in a defined playing field.  2. The leader calls, "Everyone's It!"  If the participant is tagged, they must freeze in whatever position they are in until the leader yells, "Everyone's It!" again.  We played it in the workshop, using our "turtle feet" to move around the room.  Even in slow-mo, we were laughing so hard that we were crying.
After hearing about all the school has to offer, the visiting 6th grade students will have the chance to plan their own Campus Tour using an All-Write-RoundRobin.  Students will taking turns identifying places on campus that they would like to see.  As each student shares their response, all members of the team write each location on their own paper.  After time is called students are selected at random to share a location that their team listed.  Other teams add the response (if they don't already have it) to their Campus Tour Sheet. I hope that this creates a more interesting tour for each student my appealing to personal interests.  If they want to see the art room or the field house, I want them to see it - after all, 6th Grade Day is all about our visitors!  What am I missing?  I know that I still need to find or make props for the photo booth, but is there anything else?  Please share links and ideas!

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