Submitted by Gretchen Taylor, Illinois

Idea posted August 19, 2002

Some uses for the individual chalkboards:

1. When listening actively to a short selection, ask questions like, "Is it fast/slow? high/low?, loud/quiet?, etc." Then let the students answer on the spot by writing their answer and all holding up the boards for you to see. Of course, do one comparison question at a time. :)

2. Students can show the form of a song or listening selection by drawing shapes in a sequence or letters ABA on their boards.

3. Kids can create rhythmic math problems using rhythmic notation (2 + 2 = 4 written as half note + half note = whole note). Or they write a rhythmic equation that you give them and go on to include the answer. Then all show you their boards.

4. Simply use the boards for answering simple multiple choice assessment questions (i.e. you display 2 four beat rhythm patterns on the main board and ask, "Which pattern did I clap?" Then clap one. They write #1 or #2 to show their choice.). This idea can be modified for many kinds of questions.

Also, something I do when all the kids are putting down an answer at the same time and I don't want the quick answerers to give things away, is have them all hold their show of the answer until I call out "show me." Then all hold up their boards together.

Good luck.