Saturday, February 7, 2015

Characterization and Wordles

I downloaded this app called Phoetic that allows you to create wordles out of pictures while we were reading "Peter Pan" in class.  I was playing around with it and found it to be kind of fun and I was thinking how can I use this in my class.  I don't have the technology available to allow for students to create their own wordles, as I am only using my own ipad in the classroom.  So, I used a character traits list that I probably found on Pinterest, with a google image of the characters and...
Peter Pan
 I just gave them the Peter Pan wordle for their notebook to start with.  I had them put it in their reading notebook and with a partner they took turns highlighting character traits.  They were instructed to cite evidence from the text to justify their chosen character trait to their partner.  If their partner agrees, then they both highlight that word on their charts.  If they don't agree, they discuss, making their claims for and against the trait until one is convinced.  After reading more of the text, we repeated the activity with Captain Hook.

Captain Hook

I enlarged the wordles on the copy machine to make posters.  After both characters had been discussed at length in pairs I had them come up to the poster and highlight a character trait, explaining their reasoning.  Some of them really surprised me!  When a student said, "Peter Pan was confused..."  I have to admit that I was doubting for a moment that the claim would be well supported.  The student went on to say that he was confused because he insisted that mothers were bad and that he never wanted to have a mother, but at the same time he was having Wendy pretend to be his mother. 
And because I am the the nerdiest teacher ever, I wore this shirt that I found on Pinterest that day. The image is made using the text from "Peter Pan".

Six Word Memoirs

I also had the students write "Six Word Memoirs" on the characters.  I am a fan of this game, and use it in the classroom often.  It's a great way to get the students to summarize characters, plots, texts, etc.

1 comment:

  1. I love this! My son's 4th grade class does something similar with their spelling words. I can honestly say it is the first year where he hasn't fought me on this assignment at home! He is a very bright boy, but he hates what he deems as busy work. I think it's so important to actually write the words down (motor memory, visual learner etc.). This new way is so engaging for him. Not only is he learning the words, but it is also bringing out his creative side. I have to say....his teacher is amazing and fabulous at finding ways of making work relevant, engaging and fun!