Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Tic-Tac-Toe/Simon Says Mashup Game

HEY EVERYONE. I need to share with you this thing that is super fun and so easy and you'll want to do it all the time.

So a few weeks ago I visited an afterschool club at one of our elementary schools. One week, I saw the K-1 kids; and the next week, I saw the second graders. Fresh from the Wisconsin Afterschool Association Conference, I felt ready to put some of the things I learned into practice while I geeked out about the library. So I used my The Book with No Pictures activity, read a few funny and interactive books, and made sure to include some silly songs and a game of Simon Says to promote self-regulation.

I noticed when I visited the K-1 kids that this particular afterschool group seemed mildly obsessed with Tic-Tac-Toe. They played each other, they played their teachers, they played in groups with rules I didn't exactly understand. So when I was planning the 2nd grade visit, I figured I might want to incorporate Tic-Tac-Toe in some way. I Googled around for a new version of it, or a new game they could play in that style, but nothing really stuck with me. A light bulb went off and I started Googling about kids using their full bodies to play tic-tac-toe. What if it was our self-regulation game? Then I found this.


I knew exercise would get their blood flowing but we had a small space inside a classroom to work with. SO, I went about creating a Tic-Tac-Toe/Simon Says Mashup! It was so much fun that I made it an addition to our Star Wars Party in May, using the moves described for Don't Drop Yoda at Lemon Squeezy.

Here's what you need:

Thursday, May 07, 2015

Ask Away #2: Field Trips are an Advocacy Tool

So I'm sure I'll talk about it more sometime (yeah, right, just like I'll catch up on my programming posts sometime, right? I'm The Worst), but for now I'll just say I couldn't ask for a better group of colleagues to come together, reflect on current practice, and tackle scenario-based questions for my inaugural go at Iron Fist: The Class. Nothing brings a group of people together like talking about when we've felt most vulnerable and/or empowered for six weeks in a row, I guess. I'm ecstatic to hear from them, because why don't we just all hang out forever now?

So I was happy to hear that Brittany Gitzlaff, youth services director at Waunakee Public Library in WI, agreed to my featuring a recent email conversation of ours! Here's her question:
"After the success of my first few 4K field trips, due in large part to yours and your coworker Brooke's blogs, I was wondering if you had any advice or tricks on writing field trips and tours... Basically, I just don't want them to come in and think that I or the library are completely boring. :)"