We always like to reward students for their extra effort during state-test week each spring. But we wanted to plan a fun event that would be more than a big party. Our teachers came up with a special event that was super fun and educational!
Our state's mandated testing keeps students cooped up in the classroom taking assessment tests each spring. Teachers wanted to reward the students for doing their best work and keeping focused on the exams, but they also recognized that a reward that had educational value would be the best kind of reward. Of course, rewarding students in educational ways becomes problematic as spring weather improves and the sun shines. Finding ways to play and learn can be a fun challenge.
Our teachers came up with a great idea! The activity they planned would be a real reward and it would have educational value. The teachers planned a science/math activity that would give students freedom to "go fly a kite"!
Students spent time in their advisory groups assembling individual kites and then tying four kites together to form a larger tetrahedron mega-kite (that's the mathematical part). On the morning after the final assessment test was completed, students gathered outside for the science part of the lesson. They flew large groups of kites on the ball field. Wind currents carried the different sizes of tetrahedron's to varying heights.
Those flying kites were a beautiful sight on a very fun school day. Teachers had given students a reward for their testing efforts while staying within the guidelines of the math and science curriculum. Not a bad way to end the testing weeks! Also not a bad way to show students that they can "go fly a kite," have fun, and still learn.
Now that we have experienced this fun activity, I have only one additional recommendation. That would be to have additional activities planned to keep students engaged and entertained after they have completed their part in the kite-flying event. Or in case the weather doesn't cooperate with a great sunny and breezy day.
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