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Brain Candy - an Integrated Journal

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I just got home from teaching French and English in Ankara, Turkey (one year). One of the elements in my grade 6 class that I experimented
with was an integrated journal book called "Brain Candy".

In this book, students were able to do personal writing in the front (ie. current issues, personal reflections, poetry, a letter to me....). The back of the book was reserved for their "Brain Candy" section. This is where we together explored diffe rent solutions and patterns to various "problems" and situations. Integrating DeBono's Lateral thinking strategies with our various grammar topics, we were able to creatively explore not only the English language, but more importantly different and diver se means of thinking.

An example of one week's "brain candy" was the integration of modals with an abstract drawing. I simply asked the students, "What might/could this be?" The drawing looked something like two lolli-pops standing side by side. As you can imagine, the results were dynamic.
Their answers naturally used the modals that I was looking for, and their creativity was out of this world. Here are some answers:

"They could be two joysticks from an airplane"
"Could they be from a shopping cart, but only upside down?"
"Sir, they might be the attenae from aliens from Mars!"

Name: Jeff Walters
Email: jwalters@netrover.com
Location: Newcastle, ON Canada

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