Monday, November 19, 2012
At the end of the day on Friday I pulled out two Vermont 1000 piece puzzles. I split the class in half and had them go at it. What I didn't realize was just how much fun the kids would have! They were focused, cooperative, and 100 percent engaged in the activity. So much so, that they begged to leave the puzzles out in the room (my plan the whole time, but they didn't need to know that.)
Today the students piled into the room begging to do the puzzles. They finished their morning work, "Mrs. West can I work on the puzzle?" They finished their math work, "Mrs. West can I work on the puzzle?" They had a few minutes before lunch, "Mrs. West can we work on the puzzle?" It was time for dismissal and we had to wait for the buses, "PLEASE Mrs. West, can we work on the puzzles?" Who would have guessed that I created such monsters!
The things is, the puzzles are giant maps of Vermont. Each includes important attractions, land formations, rivers and borders. Each puzzle is an interactive lesson for the kids. They are quickly learning that when they put together Lake Champlain it is in the north western part of the state. They are pouring over our state's features without even realizing they are doing it. I hear them talking about the Quechee Gorge, the Connecticut River, Ben and Jerry's, Stowe, etc. All the while, they are having a blast! Shh, don't tell...