Having a solid start to a lesson is vital to ensure the students are engaged and ready to learn. In this series of blog posts I will be listing a huge range of starter activities for use in the classroom to aid your teaching. Let me know your favourites in the comments below.
#1 Odd One Out
Display three pictures on the board. Ask students to discuss which is the odd one out. Students must be able to give reasons why. This also works great as a think, pair share activity.
Use with numbers, words or pictures etc. Definition bingo is by far my favourite where you give the children a selection of words to choose from, then you read the definitions. The first student to cross off their words win. Older students can usually make this game themselves.
#3 Question Answer Match
Provide groups or pairs of children with a selection of questions which they should match to the correct answers in a set time limit. This can be about the previous lesson or as a way of ganging prior knowledge for this lesson.
Display anagrams on the board with key words or phrases related to the lesson content. Students must try solve the anagrams
#5 Blank It Out
Choose a definition or phrase which is relevant to the lesson and display it on the board with key words blanked out. Students must try and guess what the missing words are. For differentiation give lower ability students the words on a separate piece of paper.
Display an image on the board which you have covered with squares. Pick a student to answer a question about the last lesson. For every correct answer, reveal a section of the image by revealing a square. The student who gave the correct answer has a chance to guess what is happening in the image. When the image has been revealed, discuss how it links into today’s lesson.
#7 I Know/ I Do Not Know
Give students a set of cards with questions on. These questions will be answered throughout the lesson/topic. Ask students to sort the cards into three piles; I know the answer to these, I am not sure on the answer to these, I do not know the answer to these.
#8 Dedicated Reflection time
When you have marked students books, ask them to respond to the marking at the start of the lesson. You could put prompts or exemplar work on the board to help guide them. You can also gets students to peer assess each others work.
#9 Group Prior Knowledge
Display the title of the lesson/topic on the board. Give students a short amount of time to write down everything they already know about the topic, either in note form or spider diagram. After the time is up get students to swap work and see if they can correct/update the other students work. Finally get students to contribute to a full class example on the board.
#10 Name 3 things which…..
Pick and student and say ‘Give me 3 things which…’ and end the sentence with something which is related to the lesson. If the student succeed they can then do the same to another student of their choice. This works best towards the end of a topic.