This is a really fascinating article about engaging students through outrageous lessons:
TLN Teacher Voices: Outrageous Lessons
This is a nice review on the book: Teaching Content Outrageously: How to Captivate All Students and Accelerate Learning
Among the "a-ha" moments for me in this article (and I have not read the book) is the fact that an outrageous lesson can actually improve discipline. I found that very interesting. I doubt that it is true if the students are not learning and do not see a connection to the learning target or objective.
I have found that some of my most dramatic lessons (dressing as a Roman Soldier, trench warfare with paper balls, purchase points system w/Reformation) have been very successful. But, what is missing here is the fact that the lesson must be supported by strong setup or follow through to be sure that the objectives are taught and learned. It is one thing to do something dramatic, it is quite another to be sure that learning has occurred. When the two are tied together it can be quite an experience for students and one that they will always remember.
i totally agree! you can't simply do simulations without making sure that the objectives are clearly stated and taught. Although I do a lot of activity in my classroom, the content connection nearby and constantly reinforced.ReplyDelete