Here's another lesson which utilizes different results with instructions. It
taps into observation skills, visual memory, translating words into visual
images, following directions, etc.
The day before the lesson I ask students to pay careful attention and be
especially observant on their way to school.
Students pair up. Student #1 gives verbal directions to student #2 on how
he/she gets to school. Detailed directions with many landmarks. (I walk out
the door, go down 4 steps, turn right and go one block past a fire hydrant,
a white house with a big tree in the front yard, and a shingled house with
flowers along the driveway,...) Student #2 writes the directions down as
they are being dictated.
Then #2 gives directions to #1.
Using only the directions they wrote down students create a map which
illustrates those directionas. Everything mentioned in the directions must
be in the map. I always do an example first for the class. Maps can be as
elaborate and colorful as students' imaginations.
When the lesson is over I create a "treasure hunt" around the school for the
class. I divide the class into two teams, make 2 separate sets of
instructions to the "treasure" and see which group can get there
first.There's always runner-up prizes for second place. We do other lessons
with maps, but this one is always fun.
Brattleboro Area Middle School
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