On a Saturday morning last month, I went to an ALL CPD event in Manchester called "Active Learning" by Greg Horton. It was absolutely amazing, he really got us out in the middle of the dance floor, we laughed and learnt a lot. We promised to try his activities immediately in the classroom, and I have included something "active" in most of my lessons ever since then.
The "tense dance" is suitable for secondary learners, you dance with a partner, who says a sentence in present/past/future and you have to move accordingly.
Present: one step to the side
Past: one step backwards
Future: one step forwards
In primary school we only speak in present tense, so I came up with different challenges for my classes today.
Weather sentence with a silent letter: one step forwards!
Weather sentence without a silent letter: one step backwards!
Weather sentence with an adverb: one step sideways!
Weather question: twirl!
Sentence with a feminine noun: move forwards!
Sentence with a masculine noun: move backwards!
Sentence with an adjective: move sideways!
2 verbs in a sentence: sentence: twirl!
Sentence "on the hour": move forwards!
Sentence with "half past": move backwords!
A question: move sideways!
It was a loud and messy activity, we loved it! I demonstrated the dance beforehand with a volunteer, and it was so funny:-) I even put some background music on ("Jota de los toros", our eTwinning partner Natalia sent us from Valladolid), so the noise level was similar to a Saturday night in the disco! I walked around, helped out with the sentences and danced with the shy ones.
The PowerPoint was up for support, but I made it clear that they could use their own sentences. They took turns saying a sentence each. The classroom was just about the right size, but next week I will take them to the hall for the dance.
Thank you Greg for this fantastic idea, I remember you travelled for 5 hours to get to Manchester, but it was well worth it, you made about a hundred children laugh and enjoy their active learning today!