Friday, February 08, 2008

Popsicle sticks

How do I get students to raise their hands to answer a question?

You don't! Use popsicle sticks as a technique to call on students. I found this technique to be helpful. Get some popsicle sticks and on each stick write the name of each student. When you are teaching and ask a question, rather than requiring the students to raise their hands, pull out one popsicle stick and call on that person to answer the question. They never complain and realize it is the luck of the draw. I have also used popsicle sticks when putting students into teams.

Using popsicle sticks to call on students help them stay alert as they never know whose name will be pulled out. The stick goes right back, so the child may have to answer the next question as well. Students never know when they will be called on to participate. In addition, there have been times when I have pulled out a name, but chose to say another student's name, either because I felt the original student could not answer the question or I was trying to get the attention of the student whose name I actually called. So you can be flexible with it.