Thursday, July 16, 2015

Task cards

Task cards.  How do I use them?  What are the possibilities?  How can I find them? 

First, I personally use task cards in three ways-

1) Work Station --  This, to me is the easiest. It always reinforces with the main skill of which  I am focusing, I use their answer sheet as a formative assessment to hold them accountable during workstation time, and it  gives me data for flexible grouping.

2) Group work--  Ideally, it is a great strategy for pairs, but I have used them in cooperative groups.  The key here is giving everyone a responsibility, and I also use the talking sticks concept.  <-- this link is a preview copy, but  can see how it works and use it for yourself. If you really like it and don't want to recreate it for yourself--You can find it on  TpT. 

I use these responsibilities:
Reader:: Reads the cards
Scribe: Writes the group's answer.
Card Holder: This person holds the unused deck of cards-
Card Organizer: This person holds the used cards and puts them back in numerical  order when the activity is finished.

Every person in the group is given a Popsicle stick. The Popsicle stick is their talking stick-- once the card is read, the members take turns going first with what they think the answer is and providing evidence from the card of why they believe it is the answer. As they give their response, they place their Popsicle stick in the center of the group-- once everyone has gone the Scribe will record the answer that the group agrees upon. If there is a disagreement, The scribe can make a note on the back of the recording sheet the other answer and the person that disagreed initials it.  I never want to force anyone to get a wrong answer if they disagree with their group. :)

3) RTI (response to intervention) I use this for one on one instruction.  They are short, and only take a few minutes.  I have not used them for a probe-- just because I am reading the information with the student. 

There are TONS of free task cards out there--  the challenge is printing, lamenating and storing. Storing is my biggest problem, but I think I am going to try using coupon envelopes and plastic containers this year.

Here are some free cards:
guided reading prompts
reading strategies  
telling time
revising editing writing
Fall sentences to expand
Journal prompts
figurative language (bee themed) 
reading strategy: visualizing
task card template: make your own!
journal prompts using natural pictures
primary source documents
Multiple meaning words
Dictionary skills

There are tons of them all over the place!!
How do you use task cards and how do you store them?