Author: Rebecca Mac

Create an Awesome (Free) Header in Ten Minutes

The Daily Post

A custom header image is one of those personal touches that can really set the tone of your blog and establish your visual brand. What’s that murmur in the back? You don’t have time to create a custom header? Image-editing software is too expensive? Think again. Today, we’ll show you how to create your own snazzy header quickly — and for free.

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Three Ebooks to Spark Creativity and Grow Traffic

The WordPress.com Blog

At WordPress.com our raison d’être is to do everything we can to help you make your blog the very best it can be. Over at The Daily Post we’ve got daily writing prompts to give your muse a friendly nudge, we publish articles on how to grow your traffic and community, as well as tips and advice on how to take great photos, no matter which gear you choose.

We’ve compiled a ton of great material into three new ebooks, made with love, for you. And, they’re free. They come in three fetching formats so we’ve got you covered no matter whether .pdf, .epub (iBooks), or .mobi (Kindle) is your jam.

365 Writing Prompts

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So you want to write but you have trouble getting started? Writers’ block a perpetual, unwelcome guest? With 365 Writing Prompts we’ve got a different writing prompt to jumpstart your muse each and every…

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Who’s got the cat?

This activity takes no preparation. All you you need is a prop such as a toy, classroom object or flashcard. I use my bag puss cat called George.

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First, I practise prepositions of place using hand gestures and getting the students to repeat in chant form.

Start by holding your left hand out in front of you clenched in a fist.

To practise ‘ON’ put your right flat on top of your clenched fist.

For ‘UNDER’ put your flat right hand under your clenched fist.

For ‘IN’ put your first two fingers of your right hand into your clenched fist.

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Select a willing student to go and stand outside the class. Tell them they are not allowed to listen or look whilst outside.

Give the cat or any other object you are using to one student to hide. They can hide it under their desk, in their bag or next to something.

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Ask the student to come back in. The class has to ask the student ‘WHO HAS GOT THE CAT?’. The student then has 3 guesses. They have to go up to the students they think has got the cat and ask them ‘HAVE YOU GOT THE CAT?’. The chosen student then has to answer ‘YES, I HAVE’ or ‘NO, I HAVEN’T’.

If they guess correctly, they have to say ‘NAME OF STUDENT/SHE/HE HAS GOT THE CAT’.

The person who has the cat can then go outside to play. The person who has just come in gets to hide cat.

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I’ve played this with my 6 and 7 year olds and they really love going outside and coming back in. Some other teachers think they’ve been sent outside for misbehaving!

Reporting Verbs Art Gallery

This a low-prep activity suggested to me by a friend and colleague called Robert. I think he got it from a book called 700 Ideas for the Classroom by Macmillan Publishers.

Distribute a post-it note to each student with a reporting verb on it. Tell your students to keep this a secret.

Students have to draw a picture to illustrate their secret reporting verb. On the back of their picture students need to write a sentence using the reporting verb.

You can do the next part of the activity in a variety of ways:

1.) Get students to stick their pictures round the room. They should write their name or number on their illustration. Students can then walk round the ‘gallery’ and try to guess the reporting verb and write it in a grammatically correct sentence.

2.) Students can swap their illustrations with a partner and do the same as above.

3.) I have used the collections of pictures previously created by a group of students in a private one-to-one setting. We worked through the pictures by examining the message of the picture and trying to guess the reporting verb and how it was used in the secret sentence. The student I did this with enjoyed the funny illustrations and it took no prep at all, only recycling!