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Thursday, March 31, 2016

Sentence BINGO

Image result for nerdA few nights ago, my ninth grade daughter came downstairs with English homework. Her teacher had given her sample editing and revising passages from previous state exams, along with a BINGO card with words, phrases, and sentence types to find. My daughter needed help understanding some of what she was looking for, so we spent some quality time together discussing grammar. 

Being a connoisseur of interesting lesson ideas, I emailed said teacher and asked if I could steal from her. My students took their state reading exam this week, and we are ready for more formal writing instruction. I looked at the BINGO card as an opportunity to review information my students have been working on since kindergarten. So with the high school teacher's blessing, I revised the BINGO card to fit the needs of my students:

Students were mixed into random partnerships and given two editing and revising passages from a previous English I (ninth grade) state exam. They had to look through the passages to identify sentences that would match the descriptions on the BINGO card. To challenge them even more, not every square on the card had a matching sentence in the readings. They were also not allowed to ask me questions about the information they were looking for; they had to look up everything online to assist them in finding what they needed. 

Once the partners felt that they had a BINGO, they had to come to me and confirm their choices. Every time they had a correct square, I marked it with a dot. If they made a mistake, they were sent back to try again. After my first class, I told all of the others that the high score was four BINGOs on one card, and that made the rest of my classes a bit more competitive. 

Although I was not sure how this was going to work, most of my kids were engaged in the activity, determined to get a BINGO. Many were not able to complete a row today and make BINGO today, so they asked for more time to work on the assignment. I don't think there is a better lesson than the one the kids ask to continue. 

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