Quick, engaging lessons for lively class

Trolls are popular characters in storytelling in Norway.

Trolls are popular characters in storytelling in Norway.

3 minute Alphabet Quick Start or Reflexion

Use to engage students in reflecting on what they know with words in alpha order.  Teacher assign topic: Example: words that deal with Math

1.  WRITE THE ALPHABET in alpha order down the side of the page. A to Z

2. Write a topic word that starts with that letter. Do not worry about spelling.

3.  Skip around with your thinking. Do the easy ones that come to mind first.

  Add,  Zero  Subtract  etc....

4.  Teacher can throw out words to help.

5.  After 3 min. students can fill in list with neighbor.

6.  Discuss

Can be used at end of a lesson to see what students learned or need more help with.


My name is Alexia

My number is eight

I love to run so I'm never late.

Teacher shows example with her/his name .

My name is Gretchen

My number is four.

Smiling at me, this class I adore.

Go over the exact layout of poem.

Number must be written out between one and ten.  Only numbers between these can be used.  Next line must rhyme with  second line last word number.  "Try to show a skill or interest that you have."  Do a couple with the class. 

Share with class . Four or five students at time can line up in front of class.

If someone wants to, they can sing it  or rap it.  


The Coin by Sara Teasdale

Into my heart's treasury

I slipped a coin

Tha time can not take 

Nor  thief purloin

Oh better than the minting 

Of a gold-crowned king

Is the safe-kept memory of a lovely thing.

Write a paragraph describing a special memory that was enjoyable with a relative or friend and why  you will never forget it.


Pull down the World map.  Tell students to find out where they were born and how to find it on the map. The next day they will share with the class.


Pick an interest that you have that is scientific. Could be about cooking, health, pets, animals, weather, motors, rocks, minerals, meteorites, bugs, snakes, magnetism, etc.

Figure out a way to advertise it 

Get yourself a flea.  Watch them jump 150 times their height. So entertaining.

On special: 20 adult fleas  for $5.00 at Amazon.

My Facts in A Sack

Put  3 things in a bag or sack that you decorate showing your interests.  The  3 things should not be valuable. The 3 things should show something about who you are and what you like.  

Present to the class.  Another classmate can stand beside you as you present.

STEM 20 Questions Strategy Builds Catagorizing Skills


USE SCIENCE OBJECTS Phenomena interest

Hide a  "curiosity" in a bag or behind something in room. Three states of matter discussion/questioning

  • gases (air),  liquid, solids). 
  •  Explain 20 Questions game. 
  •  Give examples of questions to determine category .

Skeletal System: Bones

After guessing  that  I had a bone. I brought out whale rib about 3 feet tall.

  • Showed skeleton book of various animals. Displayed human  skeleton poster. 
  • Projected Whale Skeleton internet.

Students felt their own ribs and bones.   What does the skeleton do for us?  Use  NSTA for lessons and background

Create Poems from Lessons

We have a skeleton

It's made of bones

And  so do Kings who sit on Thrones

             Virginia McGregor

!st graders define throne