Thursday, September 12, 2013

Do it Yourself - Play memory with your students!

As you might know if you read our blog, I love playing games in class. Today I wanted to share a game that my students love and I played with them at the beginning of the school year with you. It is memory! I teach art to students in my K-12 school and I played it with every level - elementary, middle and high school and it was a hit with each class. I highly recommend you play this in your classroom!

I set up my homemade memory game on my whiteboard but really all you need is some wall space. I prefer things even so I marked little dots five across and five down to set up my board. You can use as many pieces as you want but I decided to use 25. Then, on each dot I wrote down terms, definitions and class procedures. If you are using a wall and not a board you can use Post-It notes to accomplish this. Since I had an uneven number of spaces I had one square that was blank that did not match to anything. I drew a sad face on that one - it was sad it didn't have a partner!

You can use anything for memory so it is perfect for every subject area. Instead of putting down things that match exactly, however, use two things that go together. You can do this with vocabulary and definitions, completing a sentence, or even math problems. On my game I used some vocabulary to gauge their knowledge of art and some class procedures. For example, when they lifted one area it showed "2-D" which matched with "Flat artwork such as drawing or painting." Procedures helped them learn the routing for my classroom. "Pick up folder and sit quietly," matched with, "Do when you enter the classroom." Math problems would be great to pair problems with answers. History or geography have great possibilities as well for the game.

After I wrote my definitions, I covered them up. You can use any type of paper to create the memory cards to cover your words and terms. I cut pieces of copy paper in half and taped them over each word & definition. I could still see through after doing this, however, so I put a Post-It note to cover the center so the words could stay hidden.

When students go up to the board they lift up two sheets of paper during their turn and if they match they remove them from the board. I divided them into teams and had students take turns. I allowed them to have help from their team if their team knew where a match was.

This game didn't take long to set up and it was fun to see them so excited to play. Let me know if you end up trying or have tried this in your classroom!

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