This is probably my most favorite classroom activity ever! Your students will love it! They create cheesy pick up lines and you'll be cracking up! It can be used to review or learn about people from a particular time period or unit.
Here's how to:
1. Generate a list of people you want to review and assign one to each student.
2. Students complete the "preparation" handout (homework or day before in class).
For Speed Dating Day:
1. Set up desks in pairs. I like desks in sets of two facing each other so the students are looking at each other, but anything will work.
2. Give each student the Speed Dating Chart. Have students read over the questions and instructions and review their own prep sheets so they are ready to interact.
3. Give each pair a few minutes to talk. Students will act as their person and ask questions to get to know each other. As they chat, students should fill in a row on the chart and determine how compatible their historical figures are with others. I like to have my students rate each person 1-10 on compatibility.
4. Rotate until you run out of time. I teach in 50 minute periods, so my students generally will not have time to meet everyone, but that's ok. Stop them 5-10 minutes before the end of class and reflect on their matches by answering the final question.
Another tip: If you have students who are unprepared to act as speed daters, situate them in a seat next to a pair on the end. As the other students rotate through those seats, they can still take notes on their chart with info they learn about the historical figures. Later they can do the prep work and finish filling in the chart in regards to compatibility.
What if I have an odd number of students??? You as the teacher can act as a historical figure and rotate yourself into the mix so there is an even number. What I generally prefer though is to have an extra seat at the end of the row that an odd student rotates into. While in this "time out" seat the student can review their matches so far and fill in rankings. It gives them a couple minutes to reflect before they jump back into the fun!
Have fun!!! Their pick up lines always crack me up!