21 Things to Do With an Index Card

  1. index cardHave the kids draw a mini-mural in three minutes or less that represents the day’s lesson, then explain it to a classmate.
  2. Do a three question Get-To-Know-You at the beginning of the year:  a)How are you feeling about taking this class and why?  b) What’s one thing you’re really passionate about? c) What do I need to know about you to be the best teacher I can be for you?
  3. Do a three question check in every quarter:  a)  How’s it going for you in this class right now and why? b)  What do you need from me to be successful?  c) What do you want to tell me? (Anything in the world.)
  4. Wad it up and throw it at a kid who’s annoying you.
  5. Write a short mantra you need to remember, then put it somewhere (like your pant pocket) where you will accidentally find it throughout the day.  “Spring Break in three weeks…Spring Break in three weeks.”
  6. Write each kid’s name on an index card, then put each index card on a desk the first day of school (or first day of a new seating chart) so kids know where they sit.
  7. Collect the seating chart index cards, rubber band them by class, and use for the rest of the year to call on kids at random, form groups, or to select “volunteers.”
  8. Have students write a rant on it during a stressful time of year, then dramatically read it to the class.  (PG ratings recommended.)
  9. Write a rant on it during a stressful time of year, then burn it, flush it, and/or dramatically read it to anyone present in the faculty lounge.
  10. Have each kid write an open-ended question about the day’s content on one side, then pass it in a circle for other kids to answer.  “If you were a mitochondria, what would the coolest part of your job be?”
  11.   Have kids write “Yes” on one side “No” on the other and use them for class polling or comprehension checks.
  12.   Dare a kid to eat it.
  13.   Eat it yourself.  Preferably while staring blankly at the students and making odd humming noises from the back of your throat.
  14.   Draw a big red circle on it, put it in between two students and use it as the buzzer for class review competitions.
  15.   Put one word, phrase, letter, or number/math symbol on each card and see how quickly students can rearrange themselves into combinations that make sense – by group or class.
  16. Make each kid write between one and three review questions for a unit test.  Collect, use as unit review.  For extra thinking, tell them that all questions must be short answer.
  17.   Have each kid write one “answer” on one side of the card.  Pass around room.  See how many content related questions kids can write for that answer.  (ie.  A.  The Louisiana Purchase.  Q.  What large land purchase took place during the presidency of Thomas Jefferson?  What was the name of the deal that gave us the modern day states of Missouri, Iowa, Arkansas, and Kansas among others?)
  18. List the concepts from a unit on the board, have kids write the top 1 – 3 they feel they’re still struggling with.  Collect.  Use to plan future lessons.
  19.   Name it, pretend it’s your pet, and carry it with you wherever you go.
  20. Make mini paper airplanes and have a five minute brain break distance contest.
  21.   Write one short, kind note a day until you’ve given a card to every member of your class(es)
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This entry was posted in Education, Humor, Useful Junk (Ideas free for stealing) and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to 21 Things to Do With an Index Card

  1. Number 4 and 19 made me laugh out loud, but I seriously like all of these suggestions. You have a great creative mind!

  2. Mirror MUSES says:

    I have students write an essay on an index card as an exercise using an economy of words.

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