Students creating their own theme/quote posters. (This example is English specific! But the concept is totally transferable). I've found this a really useful activity for all senior year levels! Highly recommended!
You will need:
- A3 paper
- A typed up list of all of the quotes from your text (you want them to be card size, I put the quotes into a table on the computer).
- Felts (optional) Successfully completed in 100 mins
How to do itLearning taking place
| Organise students into groups of 4.
Each group is given an A3 piece of paper and the quotes and some scissors.
Fold the paper so it creates a grid of 4 squares, in each square the students need to write a theme that applies to your text.
The first thing they are to do is cut out all of the quotes and place each quote on the square it bests fits. It is OK for a quote to apply to two or more themes.
Once each of the quotes has been placed on one of the squares the groups need to wait for the teachers next instruction.
Each group is to specialise on one of the themes (teacher will nominate so each theme is covered). They can discard all of the quotes that don't apply to their theme.
The students now need to make a poster on that theme that will then be used as a resource by the rest of the class. (I get them to turn over their A3 paper and make the poster on that)
They need to:
- Make a bold title of their theme
- Stick on all of the quotes
- Annotate how the quote illustrates or supports the theme (very important step!)
I then copy the poster and reduce it to A4 and give each student a copy of the 4 theme/quote posters that have been created. (you may have multiple versions of these, depending on class size)
| The conversations that occur whilst this activity commences is partially why it is so successful.
Make them do the cutting!
Themes should have been taught already for this to be a success.
When students debate as to which quote the theme best fits they are having to engage critically with the text. It is good to identify that some quotes apply to more than one theme. The students have had to work on all themes before specialising on one.
Students will become experts on one theme.
High stakes that their work will be used by everyone as study notes, this should increase the quality of work.
The annotation of the quotes is one of the most important steps, they are having to justify why it is on their poser. This embeds the idea that a quote should never exist on its own, it always needs to be discussed and analysed.
They look great when reduced, check out the student examples I've provided! But obviously the exercise is as important as the product.
Made accountable through teaching others