Dana Miller-Kitch is the Canadian CI teacher who replaced me at the American Embassy School in the fall of 2016 in New Delhi, India. She had trained up over that summer on the Invisibles since she knew that she would inherit kids who were taught using them. This post shows how the team gestures in the Word Chunk Team Game work. I don’t stand them up like this, they just do the gestures from their seated group, but it gives the idea. I also don’t give them second chances to get their gesture right. Word Chunk Team Game instructions can be found in the Big CI Book, A Natural Approach to Stories, A Natural Approach to the Year, and The Invisibles.
Steven has some nice riffs on the game. I really like #s 1 and 5:
1) After I am done saying my sentence, I count down 3,2,1,0 then ALL members of a group have to raise their hands. This is the huddle time and ALL students have to share out the answer.
2) I say that students have to “RESPECT the job” of the student who is choosing groups and deciding if a team was synchronized with their gesture.
3) I have my judges get all teams on the board–or at least the opportunity to answer. I say “let’s get these other teams on the board” I don’t care if the students hear me say it.
Q. In your opinion, what is critical mass for the Word Chunk Team Game? I need 3 judges, right? Will the activity work if there are only 2 or 3 teams of 3?
A. I like the big classes for the game. That way the teams don’t get in each others’ faces. I would say to have groups of two to get as many teams going against each other. In small classes you can actually have one judge to do all the jobs. It would have to be a left out kid with lots of unrecognized talent but it would work.
(Thank you, Ryann!)
1. Teacher says a group of words, or a single word, from the story, in L2.
2. Groups of 3 or 4 put heads together to translate what they heard, as a group.
3. When they have their group answer, one person raise their hand.
4. One of the judges points to the first group to raise their hand.
5. That judge, or another one, verifies that the group had put their heads together.
6. If so, the group makes their sign, synchronized.
7. The judge verifies that the group sign was synchronized.
8. They answer as a group, but their answer need not be spoken in unison.
9. If the group’s answer is correct, the scorer (student #3 or #4 in this group of 3 or 4 judges) gives them a point on the board.
10. The first group to get 2 points gets to throw a nerf ball at the target that the scorer drew on the board, or the team, standing behind a taped line on the floor at a distance of about ten feet, throws the ball (trashketballs are fine) into a trash can.
11. The team gets to throw the ball at the target as many times as they can in one minute.
12. In a composition book labeled “WCTG”, the scorer keeps a running tab of each group’s point total throughout the year, for all five classes.
13. To build competition and interest between the classes, we can add a wall poster on the wall that keeps a running score of the first place team’s total score in each class. This listing of total points builds interest between classes about the “top” WCTG team of all five classes. The scorer kid is responsible in each class for keeping the wall poster up to date.
Elena Overvold, in a late night Cascadia Conference small group setting with Lina Rubio and Erin Anthony coaching session on the Word Chunk Team Game, improved on the only weakness in the game, for those who are familiar with it:
When the kids put their heads together to try to get the answer to the question, in order to prevent the fastest processor from just blurting out the answer, they must all say the answer together.
Then, in a second new upgrade to the WCTG process, we figured out that the enforcers would have the right to disqualify a team if they just parrot the translation given to them by the fast processor. In that case, one of the most disenfranchised kids in the room could banish one of the white blond privileged kids to the sidelines of the game. Me likey equity.