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15 Activities to Use with Task Cards

Task cards are awesome! They switch things up for the students but often provide the same or often better practice as a boring old worksheet! They also allow for an abundance of creative activities with your students. You can find task cards all over the place. I have a few sets in my store & am working on more! You can check them out here! You could also make task cards with pre-made worksheets. Simply cut them apart and glue the individual pieces on index cards. Voila! ;)

In the meantime, here are 15 creative ideas for using task cards in the classroom.

1. Board Games
Pull out a board game. Some simple ones that would work well include Chutes & Ladders, Sorry, Trouble, etc. Then students simply have to pull and answer a Task Card before they get to take their turn! Brilliant! :) 

I LOVE this idea! I found it at {Task Card Corner}. Make sure you check out her other game ideas!

2. Buzzers
Put the students on teams and have them make buzzers out of whatever materials are available. They can beat two markers together, make noise-maker our of rolled up paper, stomp their feed, etc. Then flash one Task Card (on the Elmo) at a time. Now your students have an opportunity to make a little obnoxious noise instead of just raising their hands! Keep score to make the review extra competitive and enticing. 
This game is borrowed from my post on {Creative Ways to Use Worksheets}.

3. Centers 
Place the Task Cards at a reading literacy or math center and have students complete the answer sheet independently.

4. Early Finisher Station
Put the task cards in a basket at an "Early Finisher Station." When students have time, they can work to complete each of the task cards in a set. Over the course of a week (or whatever time frame works for you), their goal will be to complete all of the task cards in a station. You could even consider having a special incentive like iPad or computer time once they've completed them all.

5. Exit Tickets
Display a task card on the Smart Board or Elmo and have students answer the question and explain their answer. They can write this on an index card, sticky note, or a more "official" exit ticket and hand in as they leave the classroom.  

6. Jar Game 
Put all of the Task Cards in a bucket or jar. Students close their eyes and take turns pulling one out at a time. If they can answer the question, they get to keep the card. If not, they put it back. They student with the most cards at the end, wins.  You can change this game up by adding a "zap" card (where they have to put all of the cards back if they draw one). This is a variety of my {Bug Juice Game}.

7. Jeopardy
Place the Task Cards in a pocket chart, assign them each a value (use post it notes or dry erase markers on laminated cards), and let the game begin!

8. Journal Entries
Teach the students to journal about their task cards. For their entry they would answer the question, then elaborate on their "experience." They could write about how they got their answer, their thought process, problems they had, things they learned or were reminded of, tools & resources they used, people they asked for help, questions they have, how much they enjoy the particular topic, how they can use this information in real life, etc. 

9. Morning Work
Put a task card on each student's desk for them to work on when they enter the classroom. When they finish the task card they've got, they can trade with a neighbor. Have them keep the same recording sheet for the entire week. 

10. Partner Discussion
Put students in pairs with Task Cards. Have each student answer the questions independently. Then the students should have a conversation about why they chose their answers.

11. Pass the Card
Have students sit at their seats, or in a large circle. Give each student a Task Card. Play music. Allow the students 1-2 minutes to answer their question. Then students pass the card to their neighbor.

12. Dice Game
Grab a die and put students on teams. Assign each number on the die a special challenging way of answering the question. Keep score as you go! You can download my {Freebie Game Posters Here}
This game is borrowed from my post on {Creative Ways to Use Worksheets}.

13. Rotation Activity {Often called "Scoot"}
Place one Task Cards at each student’s desk, or at other tables throughout the room. Set one student at each task card. Play music and have give students 1-2 minutes to read their card and answer the question. Then students rotate to the next card. 

14. Student Teachers
Assign each student a task card. Give them time to complete the answer, and compose an explaination of their process. Then have students take turns teaching the rest of the class using their task card lesson they prepared. Encourage the students to ask the "teacher" questions, requiring them to dig deeper into their understanding! 

15. Task Card Hunt
Hide the Task Cards around your classroom, the gym, or the playground. Instruct students to hunt for the cards, answer the questions, and then return to you. You may want to print 2-3 sets of the same card for this game. You may want to make rules such as, “no more than one student per card.”
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