Posted by: jockmackenzie | September 7, 2009

End of Class Activity – Charades (with video clip)

If you can fill the unforgiving minute with sixty seconds’ worth of distance run –

“If” by Rudyard Kipling

I see “Charades” as a life skill. It’s a great game to use at the end of the period or when your class is waiting to be called for an assembly or whenever there’s a gap of time. (I have commented in the past and will likely continue to mention how I hate to see kids lined up at a teacher’s door, waiting for the bell, NOT making productive use of the time allotted.)

Charades is another of those sneaky ways to get kids to speak to an audience (public speaking) without thinking about standing in front of an  entire group – or whenever possible, a fairly small group.

Early in the school year, I introduce the idea of Charades and begin by acting out books, movies, songs, sayings, and TV shows. I follow this order:

1. describe what you are doing (book, movie, etc.)

2. tell how many words are involved

3. tell which word you will do first

4. tell how many syllables the word has

5, tell which syllable you will do first

At this point it’s helpful to share a number of key signals – short word, sounds like/rhyming word, opposite, recap what’s been said, add to the root word, make the word plural, give the first letter of the word, indicate common words like the, a, and.

Before long, the more outgoing students are anxious to come to the front and take over – and we’re off to the races. As another time filler, I ask students to jot down Charade topics on slips of paper that we collect in a container for instant use.

Students who correctly guess a charade are given two choices – be the next actor OR choose a classmate who wants to act.

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