Need a creative summer assignment idea for your class?
Thanks to Twitter, I found such an amazing and creative summer assignment idea that even the most staunch non-homework teachers (especially during breaks) might want to consider assigning it. I watch social media closely and it's my job to share some of the hot topics on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and other outlets that teachers, principals, students, and parents are contributing.
I found this summer assignment idea thanks to Dr. Justin Tarte. The assignment is simple: make the world a better place. That's it. That's the summer assignment. Pretty cool, huh? All right, so it's a little more involved than that. The assignment encourages students to do things constructive such as watch the news, do chores without asking, and write to a government official about an issue bothering them. It also encourages the students to explore, instructing them to learn to play a song, to watch a black and white film, eat new food, read new books, and all kinds of interesting things. It also instructs students to spend some time outside just lying on the grass, growing things, and skipping stones. The assignment also encourages students to become generous and consider others by volunteering, cooking a meal for a friend, and donating what they don't need to charity. You can see the full list below.
Can you imagine how much fun a summer would be if you did all of the above suggestions? Sure, assigning a math packet or a reading assignment with an accompanied writing assignment also has value, but this assignment encourages students to make a difference, learn countless life lessons, and enjoy their summer breaks while they still have them. Also, it would make them more than a little curious about what kind of class they'll have with you, dare I say, maybe even excited.
Do you like this creative summer assignment idea? What other things could you put inside those boxes? Could you customize the mini-assignments in the boxes to suite your class (i.e. find a new favorite genre of music for a band class)? Can you think of a way you can get students to prove they did these things, like making a scrapbook or having a badge system?
Tori Pakizer is the Social Media Editor at SimpleK12.com. She writes regularly about the use of educational technology in K-12 classrooms, and specializes in how teachers use Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and other social media. You can follow Tori and SimpleK12 on Twitter @SimpleK12. If you have ideas for using social media in schools, please send your information or tip to firstname.lastname@example.org.