Monday, August 11, 2014

Productive Procrastination

I often procrastinate working on one thing by working on something else that needs work, but isn't as hard or challenging.

Today I went into school with the intent of doing some data entry on our reports system (like a student information system) and to do some looking into the Next Generation Science Standards so I can do some planning for my General Science class.

Task one was a success.  I got overwhelmed with task 2.  I went to National Science Teachers Association and I did print off the middle school standards, but then I felt overwhelmed and flooded.

And then my packages from Amazon arrived.  Contents: Book of short stories for my lit/writing class, box of rocks and minerals,  hardness collection test kit, Algebra Out Loud book, Swish card games, and Q-bitz.

I had my kids with me, so of course I broke out the Q-bitz and we started to play.  This game requires you to recreate patterns from a game card using a set of 16 cubes. There are variations on how to play including racing to beat others, memory versions, and luck of the draw.  We went noncompetitive and  worked solo to recreate our own card patterns.
And that's when I decided that this game might be the exact right way to start my metacognition class this year.  The group I have is a mix of year 2 and year 3 students, so they have covered different amounts of the FIE curriculum.  This kind of analysis and visual manipulation is just the kind of abstract task that makes up the FIE curriculum.  I think that I can use this game to review the basic 7-step plan we use for problem solving and introduce Cognitive Functions (thinking processes) in a low-entry way that won't repeat any of the instruments.  This will put the two groups on an even playing field and unify the class so that I know where everyone stands before we start a new instrument together.

So, I was supposed to be planning for science, but instead I now have a solid plan to start another class.  Productive Procrastination.

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