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Variables and constants: Starters and Plenaries

Starters

Recap

A task recapping this lesson, meant to be used as a starter in the following lesson.

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Ten questions

A lesson starter activity. A volunteer (either a student or class teacher) is given a slip of paper so they know 'what they are'. The rest of the class can ask up to a maximum of 10 questions to guess what they are. The volunteer can only answer 'yes' or 'no'

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Double puzzle

Starter or plenary. Students are given instructions on how to use an online tool to create a word puzzle, and are told to print them out and solve each other’s creations.

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Find and sort

Starter. A fun kinaesthetic activity encouraging students to correctly arrange a sentence preparing them for the lesson ahead.

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Post-its

A fun kinaesthetic starter task where students work in teams to solve a puzzle.

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Countdown

Starter task. Students are given a set of jumbled up words related to this topic. They have to unscramble each of the words within 30 seconds.

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Compare and contrast

A starter activity in which students are given two items and asked to consider the differences and similarities between them

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Starters or Plenaries

What why how

Starter or plenary task. Students are asked three questions framed as “What?” “Why” and “How?”

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One two three

Can be used either as a starter or a plenary task. Students are given a sheet to complete firstly on their own, then with a partner and then joining up with another pair

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Sort and answer

Students work to reconstruct a scrambled question about this topic, and then provide an answer.

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Haiku

Starter or plenary task. Students are asked to write a description in the form of a haiku poem for one of a handful of key terms.

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Three facts

A starter or plenary task in which students are asked to write down three facts that they can remember off the top of their heads about the topic.

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Just a minute

Starter or plenary task. Students are asked to talk to a partner about this topic for 60 seconds whilst abiding by a set of rules

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Pick me

This provides a differentiated starter or plenary activity. Students are given a question and work in groups to come up with an answer.

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Teacher talkabout

Starter or plenary task. The class 'test' the teacher on their knowledge of key words related to this topic

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Plenaries

Find me a partner

Students are given either a question or answer and have to find their matching partner.

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Taboo

This task follows the traditional Taboo game. Students work in teams with one student from each team having their back to the board. A word is displayed on the board and teams take it in turns to describe the word to the student without actually mentioning the word itself.

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Golden envelopes

An engaging task that has an element of surprise

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I predict

This task acts as the plenary from one lesson and the starter for the next lesson

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Four four two

A plenary activity where students are asked to summarise the lesson and pick out the main key words related to the topic.

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Lesson self assessment

Students assess what they have achieved during this lesson and identify how they could improve.

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Lesson summary

This plenary provides students with an opportunity to evaluate the lesson and their learning and an AFL opportunity for the teacher.

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New words

A plenary task in which students have to identify three new words/terms that they learned during this lesson and then explain their meaning

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Pyramid

A plenary activity. Students are asked to complete a self assessment sheet to indicate what they have learned during this lesson

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Text me

A plenary activity where students are asked to write a text message to explain what they have learned during the lesson

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Tweet it

A plenary activity. Students write a ‘Tweet’ message to sum up what they have learned during the lesson

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One word

A plenary task. Students have to sum up today's lesson in just one sentence. They must include a given word within that sentence.

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Teach me about

Lesson plenary. Students become the teacher! One student is tasked with preparing a five minute revision starter about this topic for the beginning of the following lesson.

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Wordle

Students write a set of notes about this topic and then use them as the basis to create a word cloud. Their work can be used to create a classroom display.

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You are the teacher

Students work in small groups to prepare a lesson on this topic. They are provided with information and tips about the tasks they need to prepare.

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Word building

Plenary task. Students work in groups to construct a sentence about today’s lesson

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