Each group, sitting in their table clusters, was assigned one of the animals from the picture, but not the monkey or the bird. Their assignment was to take on the role of the teacher who would help prepare their animal to climb the tree. I told them to consider their animal's natural abilities and environment and to equip these animals with the tools and resources they would need to be prepared to climb the tree. After brainstorming as a group, they took their best idea and drew a picture to represent their solution.
- When they utilized their animal's natural abilities, we talked about how we will have projects that utilize THEIR talents, incorporating arts, technology, acting, music, etc.
- When they provided their animal with a more natural habitat, we talked about having a safe, comfortable, fun classroom environment.
- When they gave their animal multiple options for how to reach the top of the tree, we talked about the choices they're going to have to show mastery of the standards and how my grading policy allows for failure and reassessment.
- Some students even provided their animals with a motivation to get to the top- bones for the dogs, fish for the penguins- so we talked about what motivates them.
- Many groups equipped their animals with devices to help them climb the tree, so we discussed the resources and technology we will be using.
- Finally, some students whose ideas seemed a bit of a stretch actually helped us to see that we shouldn't prematurely decide things are impossible.
To bring it all together, they will answer the following questions on Schoology:
- What did you learn from the Growth Mindset activity with the animals who had to climb a tree?
- What did you learn about yourself through the Multiple Intelligences Self-Assessment?
- What would you like from ME as your teacher this year to help you learn and grow?
I am SO happy with how it all turned out- it was the perfect way to start the year. I'm going to refer to this throughout the rest of school year.