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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Another Leap Year FREEBIE!

It's about time teachers, ...  for Leap Year.  Actually, Leap Year is already here, but we are approaching Leap DAY.  In honor of that special event, I am offering another freebie.  This one is designed for GATE, exercising your students' fluency, flexibility, elaboration, and originality.  It's called Leaping Lizards and is part of my TpT product Destination Imagination.  

Before you look at the product, you have to hear how it came about.  After years of hosting Show & Tell without ever really listening, I tuned in one day.  Chrissy came to the front of the class and with all the drama of a diva, pointed out a rather loose tooth at the front of her mouth. Then, one hand on hip, and using the other hand to shake a menacing finger at the class, she proceeded to warn everyone to stay away from her at recess because she was NOT going to lose that tooth at school!  Then she concluded with the additional admonition that the boys, especially, had better keep their distance.  I'm pretty sure I heard a growl.

I'm nearly certain that those moves mimic her MOTHER.  = )

Then Jeff took his turn at Show & Tell.  With great ceremony and exaggerated courtesy, Jeff asked if he could use a chair for his Show & Tell. Naturally I agreed.  He sat on the chair and quickly removed one shoe and sock.  Then, holding his foot straight out in front of him, he declared that everyone needed to line up and take a look at the planters wart on the bottom of his foot because after school his mother was taking him to the doctor's to have it removed.

By the time all of this occurred, I had been teaching for 15 years.  What did I miss all of those years?!?!?!?

Following that unforgettable day, I decided I needed to up the ante on Show & Tell day.  Hence, I devised and instituted Destination Imagination.  Succinctly, an assignment sheet is sent home each Friday describing the coming week's challenge.  The following Friday, students who choose to participate, present and explain their products.  Participation generally runs at around 70%, which is better than traditional Show & Tell.  My kiddos have a purpose for their oral presentation and a week's worth of working in a positive and productive way with their families.  It is also a wonderful home-school connection that directs eager parents to work with their children in a constructive manner.

Following is the assignment sheet for the Leap Year activity:

These activities became legendary in my building.  Parents loved them and my colleagues clamored to borrow them.  So, I created "Notes to the teacher" explaining some of the pitfalls and lessons I learned through years of using the challenges.  When I became the enrichment specialist and resource teacher for the school, I found these Notes saved me many, many repetitions in answering questions from the teachers.

First graders will do almost anything for a participation certificate, at least in my experience.  Each challenge then, has a certificate that is ready to print and distribute to those who participate.  Following is the page with "Notes to the teacher" and the certificate.

If you like this product, you can find it in my TpT store here.  For another example of a component of the unit, check out my Jazzy Jack-o'-lanterns freebie on TpT.

You may also like:
Or you may enjoy:

For younger G/T students, you may like:
find it here.

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