Create engaging and exciting lessons by devising a series of puzzles to match different learning objectives. You can set puzzle problems across the curriculum to help the class investigate a range of topics. The children will need to demonstrate their subjects skills and knowledge when solving each problem. You can also get the class to select and devise some of their own puzzle problems for their classmates to solve when working in different curriculum subjects. The puzzles can help the children demonstrate their acquired knowledge and subject skills for assessment purposes.
Working in Maths, the children can investigate different facts about numbers, measurement and geometry when solving a puzzle. Provide the class with some statements about an aspect of Maths such as the digits in all even numbers sum to an even number or all shapes with more than six sides have obtuse angles. Get the children to show how to prove each fact is true or false by recording matching calculations or diagrams. Allow some children to present their findings for the class to assess whether each maths fact has been proved correctly. You can use their findings to assess their understanding and skills in a previously taught curriculum objective.
You can develop the children’s reading and written skills by getting them to explore a range of spellings to match a specific pattern or rule. Provide the class with a number of general words to help them identify initial words to match the pattern or rule. The children can then make lists of other words by using fiction story books or non-fiction books on the current classroom topic. The class can show understanding of the spellings collected by using them in sentences to demonstrate their meaning. Help the children use the lists of words to make a spelling dictionary of words to match rules and patterns that the class can use use throughout the school year.
You can help the children explore scientific concepts and knowledge by providing them with some stories about a topic filled with inconsistencies and inaccuracies such as describing the wrong properties of materials i.e. cardboard used for a rood instead of slate. The class can devise and suggest ways of proving which of the concepts and ideas in each story are true or false. The children could select investigations to show their understanding such as testing whether certain materials are impermeable to be used for house roofs. Build time in each lesson to get the class to explain how they can prove whether the concepts and knowledge in the science stories are true or false.
The children can explore different time periods by investigating historical artefacts. You can hide some example artefacts in trays of sand for the children to find and identify. The artefacts can either be collected from a local history centre or you can get the class to make some example objects during an art and design lesson. Get the children to dig out the artefacts from the sand trays and then suggest their function and history. Provide the class with a series of questions to help them investigate each artefact. You can get the children to suggest further avenues of research following their initial discoveries such as investigating uses for tools to match a specific time period.
You can provide the class with descriptions of problems to match physical and political geography. The children can suggest solutions to some of the problems such as preventing coastal erosion and planning cities to match population explosions. The class can compose presentations to illustrate their findings. You can use the presentations to assess the children’s understanding and acquisition of different geographical skills and knowledge.