Saturday, June 28, 2014

What Does Peace Feel Like - Sticky Note Mosaic and Poetry Writing Squares

Have you had the opportunity to read this book?  It is one of my favorites!  I knew after reading it that I would have to find a way to incorporate it into my classroom teaching.  I love, love, love using picture books with Middle School students - they may be bigger kids, but they still love being read to, and the shorter, more visual books quickly engage them.

After reading this book, students brainstormed their own ideas about peace using their 5 senses. 

What Does Peace Taste Like?

What Does Peace Sound Like?

We had so many creative ideas! (A personal favorite involved Peace smelling like Justin Bieber's hair - you have to love grade seven girls!). When they were done coming up with ideas, we had them write their ideas down on individual Post It Notes using black sharpies. We then assembled the Post Its together into a mosaic, which we displayed in the hallway. Everyone loved coming by and reading their ideas!

One of the huge bonuses of this activity was the huge visual impact it created on the wall outside our classroom, using very inexpensive and limited supplies.  All it took was sticky notes and sharpies!  I love covering the bulletin boards outside my room with new things the kids are working on, and this really looked amazing when it was complete.

I can think of so many ways this kind of activity could be done in the classroom - I am actually really excited to use it as some kind of goal setting or get-to-know-you activity in September.  If you like this idea and plan to use it in your classroom, leave me a comment below this post - I would love to hear how you used it!
When we were done brainstorming ideas by creating our mosaic, we had the kids complete a poetry collage activity.  Each student was given a square of tag board and a stack of magazines.  Students used the ideas they had previously brainstormed to write their own poems about peace onto the tag board squares, and then decorated them with a magazine collage relating to their poems.  To help stick the images to the tag board, and to give the completed squares a bit of shine, we coated the completed squares with a think layer of Modge Podge (love that stuff!)

When the squares were dry, we collected the squares (all 120!!!) and mounted them on a large school bulletin board.  When we hung them, we left the word "Peace" uncovered.  I think the end result was amazing!  I really wish I had taken a better picture!

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