Many years ago, I was given a definition while taking a graduate course about the family. Through the years, I have often used it as a poster project lead-in to my family unit. However, since going 1:1, I decided to try this assignment a new way, using technology…aka iMovie! While I’m not an expert with this app, my students are and they were eager to assist their peers when necessary. I even surprised myself by creating a YouTube channel so I could share a couple of student samples with you! Not a 1:1 school or have access to technology–no worries! I’ve included my original poster assignment (see attachments), which by the way could be easily modified for the differentiated classroom. I loved seeing how each student interpreted the family definition and how unique and diverse each movie was…just like families!
Seems like quotation posters are everywhere on social media! These posters often contain very important and inspirational or motivational quotes that can be used in a variety of ways in the classroom. Below you will find a way to use them with your students in an interactive way, using the graphic design Canva App or website. A big thank you goes out to Linda Hayes, a FACS teacher from Pennsylvania, for her time and efforts spent collecting the running quotes for various FACS topics that you will find below and sharing them with us!
Independence or singlehood is the most critical stage of the family life cycle. During this stage, one strives to become fully able to support himself or herself emotionally, physically, socially and financially. Utilizing Sharon Lipinski’s “7 Generosity Habits” and Learning to Breathe: A Mindfulness Curriculum for Adolescents , Sasha Roble, a FACS teacher from Pennsylvania, created this lesson which encourages students to strive for a healthy body, mind and spirit. Keeping in mind throughout the lesson, that taking care of oneself means that you have a solid, strong foundation from which you can give to others throughout the family life cycle. After spending some time on managing one’s physical health, students in this lesson focus on the concept of mindfulness. Scientific studies show that mindfulness boosts your immune system, increases positive emotions, decreases depression and anxiety, grows additional gray matter in the brain, fosters compassion and enhances relationships.
Everyone is connected to a family in some way, shape or form! The roles and responsibilities within each family may differ, as do the functions they provide for their members. So, when teaching about the functions of the family with my senior high classes, I like to engage students with a station activity where they have to figure out how the items at each station relate to one of the functions the family provides. Later, students connect the functions to their own family as they create a family crest.
Occasionally, in my classes, I like to throw out little dilemma or problem situations that students must research and learn more about in order to make an informed decision. I’ve done this with baby sign language when teaching about infant language development in child development two different ways. Prior to going 1:1, I assigned this as an informational interactive foldable project, which could easily be used with interactive notebooks. I’ve also had my students use their iPads to learn more about the topic and then complete a writing assignment, applying their new-found knowledge. I also like my students to learn and share some easy signs with the class in an engaging and fun manner, where students have to use their brains and memory in addition to their hands!
I’ve been trying to update some of my lesson plans and activities to make them more student directed, as well as incorporate technology since we are now a 1:1 school. While I liked the large group decision making activity I did in this post, I wanted to build on the decision making process and use I-messages as a way to reinforce what students learned in previous lessons, but also make it a smaller group activity to encourage more discussion from all students and include technology. So, as a way to introduce teen pregnancy, I came up with a new way to meet all of the criteria mentioned above and the results were amazing! As I circulated the room while students were completing this assignment, I couldn’t believe the levels of discussion I was hearing about each of the options, including the process of actually deciding on the best option and reasons to support it. Students really got into this assignment and told me how much they liked it compared to the original format. So, give it a try and let me know if you get similar results from your students!
Breakout games are so much fun! It’s hard to imagine that something so fun can also be educational! Breakout games encourage students to work together, against the clock to complete challenges associated with a topic you are covering in class. Breakout games can be used as a way to introduce a lesson or unit or it can be a culminating review activity before a test. Either way, students love them! I tried my hand at creating one for reviewing manners, calculating tips and how to set the common table. Give it a try and I hope your students like it as much as mine did! Warning: This can get extremely competitive!
In need of more stations to accommodate her large class, Megan Piechowski of Centennial High School, Circle Pines, Minnesota developed additional activities with new topics to use with the newborn care lesson. The new topics are in keeping with the original lesson which includes the use of technology via QR Codes. Many thanks to Megan for graciously sharing her newly created materials!
Do you remember learning nursery rhymes as a youngster? Many of us do, but a lot of youth today vaguely remember hearing them, let alone recalling them from memory. It wasn’t until I started teaching child development that I realized the full benefits of nursery rhymes on the developing child. Studies show that nursery rhymes benefit children in a variety of ways. Such benefits include teaching children the art of storytelling, brain development and social skills. In addition, they help lay the foundation for literacy skills such as speech, language and reading. I always discussed nursery rhymes and their benefits in class, but now I have an interactive activity to go along with it thanks to Mary Smith of Manila High School, Arkansas. Check out the wonderful project she has designed around this timeless topic!
As part of my unit on nutrition and young children in my Child Development class, I feel very strongly that childhood obesity needs to be addressed. Students need to know that this is an epidemic that is not going away any time soon. In order to understand the causes, concerns and consequences of this issue, I put together the following lesson and activities to help promote awareness to this pandemic disease in the form of a live news report.