Complete Program for Middle School Extension, Extra Learning, Early Finishers, Extra Credit!
(Only set-up required is to copy the answer pages for student use and color print the 6 flag pages)
Aligns to Standards:
National Curriculum Standards for Social Studies (National Council for Social Studies)
National Geography Standards (National Geographic)
Contents of Product:
Suggestions for Use
Challenge List (Including a modified list based on student need)
Guideline Sample (for how I use the program)
30 Customized Student Answer Pages
6 Full color images of flags
Answer Keys for all 30 Challenges
Suggestions for Organization and Set-Up
Student Class Tracking List
This package provides a lot of flexibility in how it is used, but I wanted to share my purpose in creating it to provide come context. I teach middle school Social Studies (Medieval World History). Changes in schedule due to staffing cuts and less class time due to an increase in mandated testing meant that some things were being squeezed out of our Social Studies curriculum. One of those things was geography.
At the same time I faced the ongoing request from students (and parents), “Can I earn extra credit?” I merged these two things to create these Geography Challenges and it has worked extremely well!
At the beginning of the year I give each student a copy of the challenges to keep in their binder. I also posted a copy in the classroom, email a copy to parents, and post a copy on our class website. I explain how I use the program and at that point the responsibility is on students.
This program has worked well for me in many ways:
* I am adding geography into our already full Social Studies classroom.
* I “help” students study for Geography Challenges through some of our content. (For example, at the beginning of our unit about the history of Islam students complete a mapping activity of the Middle East. When students finish the activity I point out that they have a handy study page to complete the challenge “List 15 countries in the Middle East.”
* When students or parents ask for extra credit during the school year, I remind them that Geography Challenges are available to them to complete as they’d like (and that is the only “extra credit” available in my class).
* For students who finish classwork early I have a “Geography Challenges” corner of the classroom where I have the list of challenges, the class list so students can track their progress, and a supply of atlases and geography books. I direct early finishers to use the center to prepare to take a Geography Challenge and I will check back with them to see which challenge they are choosing to complete.
* Students who complete at least 20 challenges get their name on my “Wall of Fame” that is in my Geography Center. Their name stays there for as long as I stay teaching. I have students listed from my first year of using this program 10 years ago. I have only had 3 students complete all 30 challenges and they are listed on certificates above the other Wall of Fame list. (Students love to see names they recognize and the list is motivating to students by providing a model of success for students (“Hey, if he did it then I can too!”)
There is a lot of flexibility in how you use this program so I hope it works well for you!