Getting Kids Thinking, Moving, and Collaborating
"The Wipebook Flipcharts have been a key component in the sharing of knowledge between groups."
What are some moves we can make as teachers to increase the engagement of kids in our classes? How can we encourage kids to take ownership of their thinking? VNPS allow students to share their thinking in a low risk way. Wipebook Flipcharts are a convenient way to provide access to these surfaces in any classroom, with any group size.
We have been using Wipebook Flipcharts since our first day of school. Immediately kids were engaged and felt a sense of power having the chance to work at these surfaces. They are excited to find their work station for the class. With current restrictions, these surfaces still allow for groups to be socially distanced while working on a common surface.
Kids have quickly gotten into the habit of working at the VNPS each class. They understand that their work is on display for others and as a result students are being more careful about how they communicate their thinking. Knowing that there is a purpose and audience to the work that they are doing has given students a sense of ownership. When given math problems to grapple with, kids are adding details to a greater degree than I have ever seen in individual notebooks. They are empowering each other by building on each other's ideas. The sharing of thinking is at an all time high in our classroom.
In Peter Lilijedahl’s book, Building Thinking Classrooms, the idea of mobilizing knowledge is discussed at length. When the kids in our class are working through problems, the Wipebook Flipcharts have been a key component in the sharing of knowledge between groups. I have witnessed groups of students looking at the work of others to help themselves get unstuck, compare strategies, and analyze the work of others for potential gaps. Watching the grade 7 and 8 kids have such deep and rich conversations has been made possible by VNPS. Gallery walks while consolidating our understanding has never been easier. We have the chance to move as a group from one chart to the next, identifying key ideas each group has included in their work. This sharing of knowledge is powerful.
Students are asking to use the Wipebook Flipcharts when working on independent tasks. It has built confidence in many students. They appreciate the chance to explore their ideas in a low risk and non permanent way. Even in our small and confined classroom we can quickly and easily hang the Wipebook Flipcharts and get kids up and moving.
Melissa Nicholson, Ecole Parkside School, Border Land School Division.
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