Sunday, April 15, 2012

What To Do During Testing?

The tests may have changed, but that week comes along every year.
Every year in the spring we have testing. It used to be the SAT, but we are doing some state organized test now. It always changes my usual schedule so I came up with a simple project that can be done by all my children easily and always has a great response. Everyone uses the same supplies and it seems to be a great release after a stressful morning of testing.
(**In fact this year I actually had a fourth grade class that walked into the classroom and started cheering when they saw the outline for the project on the whiteboard)

We create the Artful Idiom as I've come to call it. I have selected various idioms that would appropriate for each grade level. I then write the list on the board along with the meaning behind each one. Students are given a 9 x 12" piece of paper, pencils, and colored pencils to create an illustration of one of the idioms.

I tell students that I would like for their illustrations to be funny if possible. Draw the literal meaning of the idiom. Also, I would like to see the text for the idiom somewhere on their drawing.

Cool as a Cucumber

Cute as a Button

Couch Potato, by the way the couch potato is eating potato chips... oh the scandal!

The most popular idiom used by my students is Tough Cookie. I can see Karate dressed cookies, construction worker cookies, Football playing cookies, etc. Hilarious!

Some examples of idioms I use are:
Its Raining Cats and Dogs
Couch Potato
Cool as Cucumber
Tough Cookie
Bats in Your Belfry
Early Bird Catches the Worm
When Pigs Fly
Wait til the Cows Come Home
Blind as a Bat
Cute as a Button
A Leopard Can't Change His Spots
Face the Music
Apple of My Eye

I do have examples of Idiom drawings on the board for students to get ideas from. Many are ones I've created, but also from past students. Brainstorming ideas together before starting to draw is also an excellent idea. 

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