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Activities

The following activities can be integrated into themes or be used by themselves to bring improvement in targeted competencies. They are not necessarily meant to be used sequentially; rather read through the activities which address the skill you wish to cover, then choose the ones which best suit the needs and interests of your learners.

PERSONAL (LP)

LP1 — Identify how they learn most easily (preferred learning style)

ACTIVITY ONE (LP 1)

Objective: Learners will identify various learning modalities.

  1. The instructor divides the board into 3 sections and writes one heading for each: "Phone number, A person's name, Directions to a place."

  2. The instructor asks students to describe how they learn or memorize a new phone number, a person's name, and directions to a place.

  3. Several students share how they learn these items. The instructor writes what they say on the board.

  4. The instructor explains to the students that different people learn in different ways. S/he asks the students for examples.

  5. The instructor erases the board and writes the following learning modalities across the top: Listening, Speaking, Writing, Doing, Viewing, Reading.

  6. The instructor asks the students, " How would someone with a ______learning modality learn best?" (S/he asks the question six times putting a different modality in the blank each time.) Students respond.

  7. The instructor asks the students which of the six ways they think they learn the best. Students respond.

  8. Students get into small groups. The instructor passes out a piece of butcher paper to each group.

  9. In their groups, students copy down the learning modalities on a piece of butcher paper and create an icon (symbol) for each modality.

  10. Students share their icons with the class.

  11. The papers are displayed in class.

ACTIVITY TWO (LP 1)

Objective: Students will identify their preferred learning modalities.

  1. The instructor describes how s/he learned how to do something, thus illustrating one of his/her primary learning modalities. ("I learned to ride a bike by watching my brother ride his first.")

  2. Students share with the class something that they learned how to do over the last year and describe how they learned it.

  3. The instructor asks students to recall the six learning modalities that they discussed earlier. S/he passes out the handout "How Do You Learn Best?"

  4. Students take the assessment and thus determine their preferred learning modality.

  5. In small groups, students discuss the following questions:
    • How do you learn best according to the assessment?
    • Do you agree with the assessment results? Why or why not?
    • Tell about a time you learned something using your preferred learning modality.
    • Which one of the learning modalities seems least comfortable to you?

ACTIVITY THREE (LP 1)

Objective: Students will identify strategies to enable them to learn better.

  1. The instructor divides the board into 6 sections and writes one learning modality heading for each: Listening, Speaking, Writing, Doing, Viewing, Reading.

  2. Students go up to the board and write their name under the heading which describes their primary learning modality.

  3. The instructor asks if any generalizations can be made about the entire class.

  4. The instructor tells the students that there are specific learning strategies for each modality.

  5. The instructor passes out the "Learning My Way" handout.

  6. Students read the handout and then in small groups discuss the following questions:
    • What is your primary learning modality?
    • Do you use any of the learning strategies?
    • Which one do you use the most?
    • Is there one that you would like to try?
    • Do any of them seem strange?

  7. One spokesperson from each group reports to the whole class the learning modality and the most commonly used learning strategy of each person in his/her group.

ACTIVITY FOUR (LP 1)

Objective: Students will identify their preferred learning modality.

  1. If students took part in the previous learning modality assessment, the instructor asks them to summarize what they learned about themselves.

  2. The instructor passes out the "Learning Style Identification Exercise" and reads the instructions.

  3. The instructor reads the words and the students mark their responses accordingly.

  4. Students total scores for each modality and chart on "Graph Your Modality Style."

  5. On a long strip of butcher paper instructor makes a chart to match "Graph Your Modality Style."

  6. Each student is given a different color of marker and charts his/her modality graph on the butcher paper.

  7. Students share an experience which illustrates that they have the learning style as determined by the assessment.

  8. Students may wish to compare/contrast the results of the "Learning Style Identification Exercise" with the "How Do You Learn Best?" assessment.

ACTIVITY FIVE (LP 1)

Objective: Students will understand two broad learning styles: Global and Analytical

  1. The instructor shares what s/he has learned about specific students in class in terms of their learning modalities and preferred learning strategies.

  2. The instructor asks the students, "Have you ever had a teacher who was hard for you to follow in class, or a boss who never explained things to you clearly enough?" Students respond.

  3. The instructor writes "Global" and "Analytical" on the board.

  4. The instructor passes out the "Which Teacher Would You Choose?" handout. The students read it and answer the questions which follow.

  5. Students share their responses to the questions.

ACTIVITY SIX (LP 1)

Objective: Students will determine whether they are more global or analytical in orientation.

  1. The instructor asks the students what the differences were between the two teachers in exercise five. The students respond.

  2. Students take the "Global or Analytical" Assessment.

  3. The instructor passes out the "Hints For The Global And Analytical" handout.

  4. Students figure out which orientation they have. They then read the tendencies and difficulties faced by each one.

  5. Students determine which tendencies and difficulties they have and write one sentence for each, giving an example of that tendency or difficulty.

  6. Students get into small groups and read their sentences.

  7. Each group reports their similarities and differences to the class.

ACTIVITY SEVEN (LP 1)

Objective: Students will be able to identify the learning modality and strategies they use in order to solve a problem.

  1. Students are handed out "The Ranch" worksheet. The following instructions are written on the board and read aloud by the instructor:
  2. A rancher died and left his ranch to his four children. As it turned out, the children all loved the ranch and wanted to move there, but they couldn't stand the idea of all living together. In fact, they hated being around each other. They decided that they would all be better off if they divided the ranch into four pieces of equal size and shape. That way they could all put up fences around their own piece of land and would not have to run into each other. Now, the hard part. How can the land be divided into four pieces of equal size and shape?
  3. Individually or in small groups, students work out a solution.

  4. After 10-15 minutes, the instructor checks to see if anyone has come up with a solution.

  5. After the solution is known, students share how it felt to work on the problem by answering the following questions either orally or in writing:
  6. In order to better understand the situation what did you do? Did you ask someone? Did you try doing it? Did you read the instructions again? Did you feel frustrated easily? If so, why do you think so? (Give an example from your life when you fit similarly frustrated.) If not, why do you think you could stick with it? (Give an example from your life when you had similar patience.) How did you feel when you found out the answer?


LP2 — Accommodate their styles to different environments

ACTIVITY ONE (LP 2)

Objective: Students will be able to share their preferred learning style and the strategies they use to help them learn best.

  1. The instructor shares what his/her primary learning modality/strategy is. S/he then tells a story in connection to being on the job or in school. The story has two characters, either two teachers or two bosses. One person is easy to learn from. The other person is difficult to learn from. The instructor's story is abut his/her experience learning from these two very different individuals.

  2. The instructor calls out, "Fill in the blank: If you want to help me learn be sure to______." Students respond.

  3. The instructor calls out, "Fill in the blank: If you want to see me have a hard time learning be sure to________." Students respond.

  4. Students share how they would go about talking to someone about their preferred learning modality. The instructor tells them that it is certainly acceptable to share with a boss or an instructor how they learn best. S/he gives an example of when s/he did this.

  5. Students are instructed to write an imaginary letter to their next boss or instructor in which they introduce themselves, discuss their preferred learning modality and preferred learning strategies, and discuss which modality and strategies are most difficult for them.

  6. The instructor reads the letters outside of class and writes positive feedback on each one thus acknowledging the students preferred learning modality and preferred learning strategies.

ACTIVITY TWO (LP 2)

Objective: Students will identify their environmental preferences.

  1. In small groups, students respond to the following questions:
    • Where do you usually like to study? At a desk? On the couch?
    • Do you to work for long stretches or do you like to take a lot of breaks?
    • Do you like to have the radio on when you are studying?
    • In general, describe your ideal studying environment.

  2. The instructor passes out the self-assessment form, "My Environmental Preferences."

  3. Students self-assess themselves using this form.

  4. Students write a paragraph describing their optimum learning environment.

ACTIVITY THREE (LP 2)

Objective: Students will ask for accommodations to meet their environmental preferences.

  1. In small groups, students compare/contrast their environmental preferences, using the "Comparing and Contrasting Our Environmental Preferences" form.

  2. Individually, students read aloud one scenario each of the "Environmental Scenarios" handout.
  3. Students discuss how well they would be able to work in each environment.

  4. Students are instructed to break into groups according to their environmental preference similarities.

  5. The instructor models a polite way of requesting environmental accommodations, such as: "Would you mind turning down the radio. It's hard for me to study with noise."

  6. In pairs, students create a role-play where two people with widely differing environmental preferences are forced to work together and are in conflict. In the role-play they are required to reach resolution.

  7. Students comment after each pair's role-play.



LP3 — Organize their time and materials

ACTIVITY ONE (LP 3)

Objective: Students will have an understanding of good time management.

  1. Students are given 10 minutes to write down answers to the following question:
    • Are you always running out of time or do you have plenty of time?
    • Give examples of when you use your time wisely.
    • Give examples of when you waste time.

  2. The instructor divides the board in half. One side is labeled, "Time Wasting," the other side is labeled, "Time Saving".

  3. Students call out activities which fit into each category.

  4. The instructor passes out the "Time Management Assessment" form.

  5. Students fill out the form.

  6. Students share their assessment results and make one time management goal for themselves.

ACTIVITY TWO (LP 3)

Objective: Students will identify their attitudes concerning time.

  1. Students are asked to summarize the results of the previous activity concerning their time management abilities.

  2. Students brainstorm different attitudes people have toward time.

  3. Students create a questionnaire entitled, "What Is Your Attitude Toward Time?"

  4. Students conduct the questionnaire.

  5. Students share their findings.

ACTIVITY THREE (LP 3)

Objective: Students will be able to organize their time using a time log.

  1. The instructor gives a sequential description of his/her daily schedule.

  2. The instructor asks the students how they keep track of their daily activities. Students respond.

  3. The instructor passes out a copy of the "Time Log" form to each student.

  4. Students fill out their time log (for as many days as they wish, up to one week).

  5. Students get into groups of four and see if they can schedule three times to meet with each other over the next week.

  6. Students write in their journal comparing their weekly schedule with the schedules of their partners. They may use the following questions as prompts:
    • Describe how the other people in your group spend their time.
    • How are you similar to them? How are you different from them? Would you like to change how you spend your time in any way?

  7. Students make a time management related goal for themselves.

INTERPERSONAL (LI)

LI 1 — Give and receive feedback appropriately

ACTIVITY ONE (LI 1)

Objective: Students will practice giving and receiving feedback.

  1. Students brainstorm a list of situations where they wanted feedback from others or when they gave others feedback. (The instructor may need to kick off this list with 3 or 4 examples, such as: I wrote a paper and I wasn't sure if it was good, I made a pot roast and wanted to know if everyone liked it.)

  2. The instructor models asking for feedback from students on various things (see "Giving and Receiving Feedback On Your Work").

  3. The instructor passes out the handout, "Giving and Receiving Feedback On Your Work."

  4. The instructor reads through the steps for the students.

  5. Students choose an item from the board, and are given time to make a role play where one person asks another for feedback and the other person gives it. The person giving feedback needs to discuss a flaw in the person's work.

  6. Students act out their role-plays in front of the class.

  7. Students comment after each role-play.

ACTIVITY TWO (LI 1)

Objective: Students will recognize effective and ineffective feedback.

  1. The instructor shares a time that s/he had to give someone some negative feedback. Students share a similar experience.

  2. The instructor passes out the handout "Giving Feedback Effectively".

  3. Students circle "Do" and "Don't" behaviors that they have done themselves.

  4. Students share their circled items with others and give examples of when they acted that way, and whether or not they would act that way again.


LI 2Learn from and with other people

ACTIVITY ONE (LI 2)

Objective: Students will identify the kind of people they tend to get along with the best.

  1. Students divide a piece of paper into four sections.

  2. In the first section they write down six words that describe themselves. In the second section they write down six words that describe their family. In the third section they write down six words that describe their best friend. In the last section they write down six personality characteristics that they have a hard time being around.

  3. In pairs or small groups, students discuss their sections with each other.

  4. Students who are listening give feedback such as "It seems that you get along best with people who are_____________. It doesn't seem like you get along with people who are_________________. Is that right?

  5. Students write a paragraph describing the kind of people they get along with the best and a paragraph describing the kind of personality characteristics they have difficulty getting along with.

ACTIVITY TWO (LI 2)

Objective: Students will identify strategies to get along with different types of difficult people.

  1. The instructor asks the students, "What kind of personality characteristics are difficult for you to be around?"

  2. Students respond and the instructor writes down what they say.

  3. The instructor passes out the handout, "Difficult People."

  4. Students read through the descriptions and in small groups discuss why people would act that way and what could be done to deal with them.

  5. The instructor passes out the handout. "Tips On Getting Along With Difficult People."

  6. Students compare their answers with the answers in the handout.

ACTIVITY THREE (LI 2)

Objective: Students will be able to use a simple strategy when it comes to resolving conflict with others.

  1. When you are mad at someone what usually happens? The instructor gives an example of conflict and asks students to reflect on the last time that they experienced conflict.

  2. One or two students share their method of handling conflict.

  3. The instructor passes out the handout, "Steps to Resolving Conflict with Others."

  4. The class reads through the handout and share their reactions to it.

  5. Students turn the handouts over and in pairs see if they can recall and summarize each step in their own words in writing.

  6. Students brainstorm a list of conflicts, such as fighting over what to do over the weekend, or arguing over who should get to go home early.

  7. In pairs students create a role-play where they have a conflict and use the "steps" to resolve the conflict.

ACTIVITY FOUR (LI 3)

Objective: Students will be able to understand how to reach consensus with others.

  1. The instructor asks the students if they have ever had to reach consensus in a group. Students respond. (The instructor will likely have to explain what "reaching consensus" means.)

  2. The instructor asks the students if reaching consensus is easy or difficult. Students respond.

  3. The instructor passes out "Consensus Guidelines."

  4. Students read through the handout.

  5. Students get into groups of four to six. Meanwhile, the instructor writes a few problems requiring solutions on the board.

  6. Each group chooses a problem and goes through the "Suggested Process" (see handout) to reach consensus on the solution.

  7. After 15-20 minutes the instructor checks with the groups to see if they have reached completion.

  8. Each group reports how well they were able to reach consensus.


COGNITIVE (C)

LC 1 Organize information

LC 2 Relate, recall and apply information

ACTIVITY ONE (LC 1, LC 2)

Objective: Students will be able to organize information sequentially.

  1. The instructor asks the students if they ever read the comics. Students respond.

  2. The instructor asks them what the significance is of them being arranged in boxes. Students respond.

  3. The instructor points out that sequence is part of our everyday lives and asks for examples.

  4. The instructor passes out the "Organizing Information Sequentially" Students read it and fill it out.

  5. Students read each other's handout.

  6. In small groups, students create a comic using pictures only, without words.

  7. The instructor asks the students if they would ever use the sequencing tool they have been working with in their lives. If so, then for what purpose?

ACTIVITY TWO (LC 1, LC 2)

Objective: Students will be able to discuss the pros and the cons of a situation.

  1. The instructor asks the students if they ever take sides when they listen to others fight. Students respond.

  2. The instructor writes some controversial topics on the board and under each one writes "pro" and "con."

  3. S/he asks the students to identify two pros and two cons for each situation.

  4. The instructor passes out "The Pros And Cons Of A Situation" handout. Students read through it and create their own lists of pros and cons as indicated.

  5. In small groups students exchange papers and give each other advice.

  6. Students share when they would use a similar process in their own lives.

ACTIVITY THREE (LC 1, LC 2)

Objective: Students will be able to compare and contrast information.

  1. The instructor asks the students how they are similar to one of their parents. Students respond.

  2. The instructor asks the students how they are different from that same parent. Students respond.

  3. The instructor tells the students that what they have done is to compare and contrast themselves with one of their parents.

  4. The instructor asks the students when in their lives they compare and contrast things. Students respond.

  5. The instructor passes out the "Comparing And Contrasting Information" handout. Students read through it and complete the given exercise.

  6. Individually, students stand up in front of the class and give a short speech on the person they compared and contrasted themselves with.

ACTIVITY FOUR (LC 1, LC 2)

Objective: Students will be able to create a forcefield.

  1. The instructor shares a situation where both good and bad things were going on in his/her life at the same time. Students share similar incidents from their own lives.

  2. The instructor passes out "What Do They Have Going For Them? What Do They Have Going Against Them?"

  3. Students take turns reading the handout aloud.

  4. In pairs, students divide a paper in half. On the top of one side they make a "+". On the top of the other side they make a "-".

  5. Under the "+" side students list all of the things one of the two people have going in his/her favor. Under the "-" side they list all of the things that are going against that person.

  6. The class discusses each person.

  7. Students share when they would use a similar process of analyzing a situation in their own lives.



LC 3 — Think convergently (focus) and divergently (brainstorm)

ACTIVITY ONE (LC 3)

Objective: Students will understand the process of brainstorming

  1. The instructor asks the class what the word "Brainstorm" means. (It is likely that they have already done it informally.)

  2. The instructor passes out the handout, "Brainstorming".

  3. Students read through it and carry out the brainstorming exercise.

  4. Students share when they would share a similar process of brainstorming in their own lives.

 


LC 4Use critical, creative, and intuitive evaluation skills

ACTIVITY ONE (LC 4)

Objective: Students will experience setting up criteria against which to evaluate things.

  1. Students share the last time they evaluated something. (It could have been a piece of clothing, a cup of coffee, a person.)

  2. The instructor passes out the, "Using Evaluation Skills" handout.

  3. The instructor reads the handout to the students. S/he creates criteria for "An excellent employee" with the students.

  4. Individually, students create criteria for the next four items.

  5. Students get into small groups and aim to create group criteria for two of the five items.

  6. Each group shares with the class the two items they chose and the criteria they selected.

  7. Students share when they would use a similar process of setting up criteria in their own lives.

 


LC 5Find and use expert, peer and written resources

ACTIVITY ONE (LC 5)

Objective: Students will access expert, peer and written resources.

  1. The instructor asks the students what is meant by brainstorming. Students respond.

  2. The instructor passes out the "Brainstorming" handout and reads it over with the students.

  3. Students brainstorm all of the resources they use in their lives to get information (phone book, library, friends, TV, radio, experts, etc.).

  4. The students generate several topics of interest on the board.

  5. Students do research on a topic of their choice. They are given a week to collect information. They are told that this is a contest, and whoever accesses the widest variety of sources, wins. They write down each resource they use on a notecard, as well as the specific information. They aim to get information from a wide variety of sources. Whoever has the most notecards at the end of the week wins the contest.

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