Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Classroom Scavenger Hunt

I'm not sure about you, but where I teach, I am expected to take all of the posters off the wall for the summer and get as much cleared out as I can so that the custodians can clean.  Because of this, things can sometimes get moved around.  Not to mention, every year with the French 1s, I have a class of new students who have no idea where anything is in my classroom.

One thing I love to do at the beginning of the year is a classroom scavenger hunt.  It gives the students the time to explore and find out where their available resources are.

The hunt questions don't just say "what color is X poster".  It's things like "what page of the dictionary is the word 'aller' on" (which makes them go find the dictionaries) or "how many kilometers separate Lille and Paris" (which makes them go find the map on the wall).  I've also asked really silly questions like "what different colors to the scissors come in" or "what animal forgot his homework" (I have a poster that says, in French, "Oh no! I forgot my homework!")

I let them work with a partner but they MUST stick together.  I don't want them separating because they might each miss out on finding where things are in the classroom.  I will also put a post-it with an X on any cabinet or drawer where they won't find any answers (generally stuff that I wouldn't want them rifling around in during the school year anyway).  The team who gets the most right wins a prize.

This activity works really well because students then know where things are and don't have to ask where certain objects are.  Eventually when we go through it, I also verbally ask the students to tell me where they found the answer to the question.