Getting children into groups

August 29, 2008 at 2:00 pm Leave a comment

Some lovely practical activities for grouping children that I want to remember from the last couple of seminars we’ve had…

Mixing up the class in a fun way

Cut up several pictures into distinctive jigsaw puzzle shapes. Use the number of pictures and pieces to control the number of groups and number within each group, so if you want 5 groups of 6, find 5 pictures and cut each one into 6 pieces. Ask the children to take one piece each (or give them out if you want to control who will be with whom). Then ask them to find all the other people with pieces of the same picture and put their puzzle together.

Fostering a bond in the group

Ask the children to bring their chair to make a circle. Then ask them all to stand up. Tell them they’re all going to all sit down again, but the challenge is to make sure you don’t sit down at the same time as someone else. If two or more people sit down at the same time, everyone has to start again. The rules are no talking and no sign language. If they get good at it you can add a time limit challenge (eg do it in 3 minutes). This created a really nice atmosphere in our group – our Director of Studies says it’s good way to start something like circle time, especially if there are issues and conflicts in the group, as the children tend to forget these in the game.

Our Director of Studies has talked a lot about creating a supportive community in the classroom, which then allows the children to take risks and try things out without worrying about being wrong. This is something I really want to achieve. She’s doing that very successfully with our group of student teachers, and I’m trying to take note so I can learn to do it too!


Entry filed under: activities.

Questions about questions Creating a supportive community: discussion and writing activities

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