Twelve Days of Christmas: The Gift that Keeps on Giving

‘Twas the night before Christmas when all down the hall,
Not a student was dozing not one of them all.
They were gluing and pasting, and carving a sphinx,
Reviewing for TCAP, this no longer stinks.

The students were working real hard all around,
Visions of cultures and planets could be found.
Four teachers, busy guiding their hardworking little chaps.
There’s no setting here for a long winter’s nap.

The tree decorated with ornaments galore,
Each holding an assignment for small groups of four.
To complete and work together so lively and quick,
And all while awaiting our jolly old St. Nick.

Now math skills with graphing, now science and food chains.
On history with timelines. On English with quatrains!
To the top of the class writing ‘bout the Great Wall!
Now dash away, dash away, dash away all.

Knowledge to be gained through enrichment and fun,
Even this time of year when it’s hurry up and run.
Their eyes – how they twinkled!  Their laughter how merry!
Their cheeks were like roses while they studied vocabulary!

They sprang to their feet, to leave for break.
And accomplish great things, good people they’d make,
As we heard them exclaim, while they ran out of sight,
Happy learning to all and to all a good night.

Keeping learning engaging and fun takes a balance as well as level of creativity.

We all know that students have different ways of learning materials, and as teachers we try to meet all those needs. Though this project, The Twelve Days Of Christmas; The Gift That Keeps on Giving, we were able to bridge the various learning styles represented on our team of 6th grade students. The project was designed for each student to work on a technology component, an art component, and a traditional paper/pencil componegirl with ballnt. Along with each of those components, the assignments were differentiated to meet the academic needs of all students. Reviewing material for the students that needed it and allowing others to expand their knowledge through integrated projects has allowed our students to more completely understand the subject matter and grow as individuals.

During the review unit, students transitioned from activity to activity by selecting and ornament from the Christmas tree. Each ornament had a specific assignment attached to it. Students wrote and recorded stories, carved from soap sphinxes, painted model planets of our solar system, graphed original artwork, compared holidays around the globe, and created a cookbook during this three day unit.

The funds that were provided to implement this review unit ensured the success of this project. The students responded with smiles and positive comments out of the ordinary activities there teachers were able to provide. “This is awesome,” one student said while graphing an original picture ographingn a coordinate plane. “Can we do it again?” another student asked while recording the ending to a story he had written using the web based recording software Audacity. The impact of this learning experience was far reaching. The students were actively involved in every aspect of the project and appeared to enjoy reviewing things they had previously learned in new ways. Using cross-curricular project to tie together the relevance of the standers allowed students to make ties between what they had learned in the past with ways to incorporate skills in other areas of their lives. Through this project the 6 Yellow Students were able to see learning in a different light.      

"6 Yellow Team" members:  Allison Burdashaw, Nathan Cook, Loes Riggins, and Cecily Williams