Saturday, December 6, 2014

Quick Draw

Here is another fun Comprehensible Input activity, which I tried out for the first time this week. I learned Quick Draw from Lauren Watson, a fellow CI French teacher in my district (she is the one who gave me the idea for Scrambled Eggs). Lauren, in turn, learned this activity from Dr. Sherah Carr, who had conducted some professional development at Lauren's school awhile back. This is a fun way for students to review already-acquired vocabulary.

The activity is called Quick Draw and for good reason! It is essentially Pictionary involving white boards and a great SILENT partner activity! You will need to create a powerpoint, where each slide has a category (such as nouns, adjectives, verbs, emotions, anything, etc) and four vocabulary words which relate to that category. Here are Lauren's directions:
  1. Students are in pairs, and each have a dry erase board with markers.
  2. Designate Partner A and Partner B.  
  3. Each partner divides his/her dry erase board in quads with a marker. Number the quads 1-4
  4. For Round 1, Partner A faces the screen and Partner B turns their back to the screen.  Project the PPT. I tell everyone the category for each round.  
  5. Partner A looks at the list of words on the screen and draws a picture for each vocab. word.  S/he draws picture 1 in quad 1, picture 2 in quad 2...etc.
  6. Partner B writes the vocabulary word which s/he thinks the picture represents in the appropriate quad.  
  7. They can't talk or gesture or write words/numbers - ONLY pictures.  
  8. The round ends with the first pair who successfully finishes all 4. 
  9. Switch roles between partners for the next round
My variation: Instead of having the round end with the first pair who successfully finishes all 4, I gave 75-seconds for each round. This way, there was still a feeling of having to draw quickly but it gave the slow processors a chance. At the end of each round, I had teams simply tally their score, and they kept a running tally throughout the game,

  1. Students LOVED this activity and asked for more rounds (even though we had played 5 rounds!). 
  2. The silent aspect of guessing the words makes it a lot more manageable and enjoyable for students. I have played regular Pictionary with students before, and it always gets really loud.
  3. Giving students a set amount of time helped lower the affective filter, because it was not a competition to finish first.
  4. I was surprised at how easily most students were able to write down the vocabulary words, based only upon a picture. This is more proof to me that when limiting vocabulary and targeting high frequency words, acquisition occurs more quickly and naturally.
  5. So many different modalities are addressed in this activity!
  6. The categories help students focus on which words will be used. I threw in an "anything" category (meaning it could be "any" vocabulary word) at the end, and although it made it more difficult, students still enjoyed it.
I will definitely add this activity to my arsenal (which means I will do it every 5-6 weeks in order to preserve the novelty). Thanks, Lauren, for yet another great activity!

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