One of our focuses this past quarter was questioning. For some reason this always seems to be a hard one for the kids to understand. I always introduce questioning with a book cover and post it notes. I have the kids jot down their “wonders” or questionings about what they think the book will be about or what is happening on the cover. This part always seems to go well, but the following lessons seem to be pretty well…AWFUL!
Is it just me or do kids tend to want to tell rather then question? I always have those kids that want to tell me what the characters did in the story rather then ask those “thick” questions. I finally decided that I needed to get the kids interested in something that they would really want to ask questions about. And let me tell you it was a HOMERUN!
I got the wonder bubbles idea from Chandra Jayn. If you click her name you will get a direct link to her blog. She is a pretty awesome teacher with amazing lessons. My only problem with this activity was that it was really geared more for the older grades 3-5 rather than for my firsties, so I made some changes to make it work for me.
Wonder bubbles are meant to encourage students to use higher order thinking skills to generate I wonder statements about a specific topic and then find their own answers through research. Awesome idea right???
Here are some changes I made to make it fit for my littles and some pictures of the finished products. This is definitely one of my favorite lessons this year.
* I started off by introducing my students to the various wonder buckets I had created (sea life/shells, sharks, reptiles, rocks & minerals, birds). I put QR codes for kid friendly videos, books, actual artifacts, etc. I really talked these up and had the kids spend some time exploring what was in the buckets. The facial expressions and conversations were amazing.
* Next, I had them choose the bucket that interested them most and surprisingly they chose pretty evenly across each bucket.
* They went with their group members, explored their bucket together, and came up with their own wonder questions and put them in their graphic organizers. See the student samples below.
DO TURTLES LOOSE THEIR SKIN? I loved this question and he actually ended up using this one as his wonder bubble question.
* I really loved watching them explore all of the items. I love how this kiddo loved listening to the ocean from the shell. She had never been to the ocean and had always wanted to do that. Sweetest thing ever!
*The students chose their question that they wanted answered and started researching to find the answers. Some of them used KIDREX search engine and others found answers through the QR code videos or books. There were a few that needed extra research on my part but in the end they all had their questions answered.
*The students used the templates I created to jot down their findings. These are available for FREE DOWNLOAD at the end of the post.
Here is a sample of what my wonder bubble looked like. I used this as an example for my kids.
· They created their actual bubbles. This was a favorite day for the kids. They got to dig into the craft buckets and use what they wanted to make their bubbles. See some samples below.
We took this time to share our bubbles with the class. We actually still have some that need to finish sharing when we get back from break!
I know this is a lengthy post, so if you have any questions please feel free to ask. You can grab the wonder bubble templates here.