by Brittany Elliott
We made it! The first month is almost over, and I am sure everyone is well on their way to getting into the swing of things. To help start things off right, I want to scream from the rooftops about my favorite Friday activity: Flocabulary.
This website is awesome for a number of reasons. Flocabulary offers videos, assignments, and assessments in: Language Arts, Math, Social Studies, Life Skills, Vocabulary (Including SAT Prep!!!!), and Current Events, with the alignment to each standard that will be covered in the lesson (Can this get any easier folks?). It is a phenomenal tool for activating prior knowledge, review of a topic already covered in class, or as a complete day’s lesson (Think your next sub plan, perhaps?)
I use the Current Events video ("The Week in Rap") every Friday as a way to begin discussions about real world issues. The videos give just enough information to get the kids interested in what is happening in the world that week, and there is a new video EVERY FRIDAY! I have had numerous students return to tell me how much they enjoyed the topics discussed and the conversations that stemmed from questions generated by these videos. In a nutshell, THESE VIDEOS MAKE STUDENTS THINK!!! Although that sometimes seems like an impossible task (especially after the first week), the students enjoy having a variety of topics to discuss, and there are so many different news stories that there is typically a topic everyone can relate to.
If that wasn’t enough to entice you, Flocabulary has tapped into our competitive nature by hosting a weekly, national competition called the “Shout Out Contest”. Each week, Flocabulary comes up with a new assignment for students and chooses one winning submission to give a “Shout Out” to during their Week in Rap video. The company comes to the school, films the students being awesome, and gives them (and our school) major kudos, and fifteen minutes of fame.
The final reason Flocabulary is awesome is that it is FREE until September 26th (If we get 10 teachers signed on, we will be able to extend our trial by another two weeks). Head on over, check out the website (CLICK HERE), and see if you can’t find a supplemental activity or video to liven up your next lesson. If you would like to see Flocabulary in action feel free to visit my classroom on a Friday (periods 3-6) and watch as the students turn into philosophers, politicians, environmental activists, and social justice advocates before your very eyes.
Congrats on making it through the craziest part of the year; now go get your Flocab on!
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