Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Breaking the "Packet" Stereotype

So I remember being a student in high school and the teacher would slap a big packet in front of us and we would moan and cry and she would wobble back to her desk. (Not my Spanish teacher though, but other classes). I remember not comprehending any of that packet because we were not made to be engaged with the packet. We were just suppose to sit there like model students and complete the packet. It was pointless and as a student, I learned to hate packets. 

I promised myself when becoming a teacher I would never give ANY worksheets or packets and I would always be engaging. It was until recently I heard a few of my really "good kids" say "We never really do simple written tasks that could help us learn it better and practice." I was taken back...Wait, you WANT that work? I was so surprised...I went back to these two same girls and asked them. After having a little conversation I found out that students actually like this work as long as it's given in moderation and they are asked to be engaged. 

I then went back into work mode to make sure I could offer kids written and fun activities and practices. I also had some really good kids say "I would like some more work to work on at home." Do what now?! 

I decided you know what...I am going to prepare a huge activity packet jam-packed with activities, practices, written opportunities and it will all be together and I won't have to worry about giving out a bunch of different papers and copies. Shew, having it all together was SO much easier! 

So this is what I did exactly! The kids LOVE it! My biggest challenge is keeping them from flying ahead so lesson learned: I will attach "EXTRA CREDIT" pages within my next packet for all my little over-achievers to do. 

We have done the following activities with working with the packet: Partner Rally, Pass & Write, Stand up-Hand up-Pair up, All Class Together where we try it and check it, Individual work (quiet time), we used it in a class game (they LOVED that day), attached homework, and even study hall work! 

Now that I have been convinced, I will create a packet with EVERY concept I teach. The kids are REALLY getting their "Ser Verb" I attach different grading criteria to each page and it's a great practice.

If you want to do the same, you can always create your own packet using the same idea. My "All About the Ser Verb" packet is available at: 


Thanks & God Bless,
Brittany B. 

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