Today we had our, now annual, in school murder mystery day. The day has proved to be a HUGE hit with the children as they work to solve a murder in their own school. As a drama activity I’ve never taught another lesson that comes close to the challenge that this provides the children.
Our current class topic is Games and so when thinking about trying to link some lessons to Cluedo a murder mystery day seemed like the way to go.
The Biff, Chip and Kipper books are nearly as old as I am (thanks for that Wikipedia) and I turned 31 yesterday!
The books are a series of stories designed to teach children how to read and speak English in line with the National Curriculum that is taught in schools. Because of this they have been incredibly popular with parents and schools for nearly 30 years!
Valiant Hearts is a superb puzzle game set during the First World War. The game follows the lives of a collection of characters in different circumstances who are all caught up in the conflict, but this is far from your normal wargame.
This year will see schools around the country give some serious time to teaching children all about the First World War. It’s Centenary and the New Curriculum fit the topic perfectly.
Well that is a title that will bother and upset some people!
As a parent and a teacher I am very, very aware of the intense upset that failure can cause children. Everyone reading this is without doubt very aware of the upset that failure can adults.
Failure teaches us how to not do things and in doing so eliminates methods that we learn do not work for us. This is a large part of how evolution works and that seems to have worked out pretty well so far! Those early humans who thought a sabre tooth tiger looked cuddly failed, those that thought it looked dangerous survived that little bit longer and allowed us to take on there “smarter” genes.
Nowadays there is a definite culture, sometimes of adults, having learnt from the upset of failure themselves that they should protect children from failure. This does not allow children to learn from mistakes and make their own path to a solution. Continue reading
Last week in school I turned my class into Superheroes for a display showing off their “super work”.
I drew large blank pictures of Superheroes poses. The children coloured in the costumes, cut them out and then we stuck oversized photos of their heads onto the poses to complete the Super look. They look amazing! They could be of use to other teachers or to parents needing a simple rainy day activity.