As I approached the last faith formation class of the year, I was looking for ways to review the material we had covered during our time together. In the past I’ve used some kind of game or competition as a review activity. But with this being my first year teaching fourth grade, I wasn’t sure if these activities would work well with this older group of students.
When I was preparing for our final class, I looked through my textbook, notes, and handouts and realized that there were a bunch of extra worksheets and activities that I didn’t use. I had an idea: why not use these leftovers as a review? I had plenty of material. There were worksheets that covered a wide range of topics, and I had multiple copies of each. Reusing them would be a good way to make use of forgotten resources rather than discarding them in the recycling bin. I organized the material and packed it up for class.
Once I arrived in the classroom, I arranged the papers in stacks and placed them on tables. The children noticed the stacks immediately and wanted to know what we were doing. I invited them to check out the stacks and pick up whatever interested them. There was a mad rush toward the tables. I’m not exactly sure why they were so excited. Maybe they were excited about being able to choose for themselves instead of doing whatever I told them; maybe they were racing their classmates to be the first one to pick a worksheet; maybe they had in mind a particular worksheet they really wanted to work on. Whatever their reasons, I was just glad that they were excited.
Some of the students discovered worksheets and activities they had missed because they were absent from a class. A few more picked up a word puzzle they remembered and enjoyed. Some of the children worked with a friend on a worksheet, while others worked independently. A couple of the boys sat on the floor together with Bibles and a worksheet that listed several Scripture verses. They raced each other to see who would be the first one to find the verses in the Bible. This was a skill we worked on this year.
I was very pleased with the outcome of this review, especially since it was such a spontaneous idea. We had the opportunity to review the course material in a relaxed way. The children could focus on what they were most interested in or what they enjoyed learning about, and they could do it in a way that suited their learning styles. I had the chance to remind everyone of important lessons, and I worked with the students in small groups. It was a nice way to spend a class time of review.
How do you review the faith formation year with your class?
That was the Holy Spirit giving you some divine inspiration, no doubt about it!
Thank you Stephanie! I know you’re right.
Thank you so much for this reflection… in the right moment.
You’re very welcome, Luz.
Lisa, Thank you! What a fabulous idea. I will save this for next year! What a blessing to end the year on such an exciting note. You planted good seeds in that class.