Students compare, classify, and describe attributes of common objects in this sorting game that develops critical thinking and descriptive vocabulary. Because the goal is to try to stump an adult, students learn to classify with more complex criteria and increased attention to detail.
This sorting game is interesting and fun for students because they get to do all the thinking, and it’s useful for teachers because it gives them information about students’ thought processes, their vocabulary development, and their ability to compare, sort, classify, and describe the attributes of the objects they choose to sort. The recording sheets provide documentation of students’ thinking.
Sorting is included in Common Core and Next Generation Science standards for Kindergarten and provides a foundation for data gathering and analysis activities for later grades.
The game What’s My Rule / Stump the Adult can help students …
- develop observation skills
- learn to compare and contrast
- develop logical thinking skills
- learn to apply mathematical rules
- increase concentration
- develop more creative thinking
- identify attributes
- categorize by criteria
- consider different grouping criteria
- learn to organize information
- develop complex observation skills
- develop creative thinking skills
- refine attention to detail
- increase descriptive vocabulary
- build a foundation for more advanced math and science process work
No preparation is required for this game other than printing recording sheets, and no special materials are needed because students discover that they can sort any group of objects.
Included in this resource:
- overview of the game
- explanation of purpose for sorting
- directions for teaching the game
- directions for playing at school
- homework guidelines and suggestions
- tips and ideas for ongoing play
- photographs for reference
~ plus ~
- Stump the Adult recording sheets for homework - two versions
- Stump the Adult recording sheets for at school - two versions
This sorting game is easy to teach and fun to play. Assign it once a week for homework, use it for early finishers, and/or set aside time occasionally for small group sorting activities. Although no special materials are required, teachers may want to keep handy a collection of objects suitable for sorting.
Make sorting a weekly activity and see if your students can stump you!
Additional homework resources:
Homework for Thinkers
Reading at Home with Fractions
Math-related art activities to engage visual learners:
Art With Symmetry
I am a retired elementary classroom teacher, a former art teacher, an artist and a writer. I have a Multiple Subjects credential, a Single Subject credential for Art and English, LDS/ESL certification, a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education with a Mathematics focus, and Montessori certification. I have worked with all elementary grades, and with special groups including ELL, GATE, and At-Risk students. Creating Art With Kids
lessons and resources are designed to foster student creativity, choice, and independence, and to encourage authentic art-making. Consideration is given to developmental appropriateness, differentiation possibilities, and teacher individuality. For this reason, directions are general, expectations are open-ended, and clip art on student pages is kept to a minimum.
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