You all know I just love sharing some of my favorite things from the “WAY BACK FILES” and this is another one. For this months BRIGHT IDEA, I thought I would share my “Pick My Pocket” board. It is so simple. There are no gimmicks or magic buttons. It is just a large, laminated poster board with library pockets glued on the front. WHAT I LOVE about this is that I can (and have) used it for MANY, MANY things over the years.
Alongside the poster are some “chips” with the numbers 1-25 on them. Sometimes I use these to determine which pocket gets “picked.” It adds an element of fun to the activity. This is a GREAT permanent center that you can repurpose over and over again.
Here are just a few things I have done:
1. Task Cards – Slip a set into the pockets and your task cards have turned into a game. Super fun and low prep. Kids pick a card and answer it. Sometimes I will slip a “freebie” card into the slot and the kid gets to skip that question. SOMETIMES… I will put TWO cards in. Hee-Hee!
2. Math Problems – Almost the same as using task cards, but straight up math practice. I will always try to keep a manipulative by the board in case a kiddo needs it. For example, if I put some cards in the pockets with clock times, I will have mini-clocks in a basket by the board. If there are money questions, I will have coins available for counting.
3. I also LOVE THIS for Problem of the Day. Program cards for a closing activity or warm-up.
3. Writing Prompts – These are some cards from my fifth grade years… (HOARDER ALERT!) but are a great example of how you can change the content without much effort.
4. Synonyms/Antonyms – Cards in the pockets are programmed with words. Students need to give the synonym or antonym of the pocket word.
5. Character Education – I love this little idea for class councils or just to get kids talking about good character. Place the character cards in the pockets and pick one a day to discuss. Always a good reminder. Here are some ideas you can use:
-What makes a good friend?
-Name something that always makes you smile.
-What are you most afraid of?
-If you could have one wish, what would it be? Why?
-If you could go anywhere on vacation, where would you go?
-What is your most favorite part of the school day? Why?