We’ve added a new feature to BrainPOP UK this year which will make using our movies even more interactive – whether you’re in the classroom or at home.
A sizeable number of topics on the site now include typeable and printable activities. And while we aim to have activities on every single topic by September you can rest assured that all new movies we’ve added from March forward are guaranteed to include activities.
Here are our 5 top tips for classroom and home use.
1. Thinking ahead
All activities are typeable and printable so, while they’re great for kids to fill out on-screen after watching the movie, they’re also a good tool to keep in mind when you’re planning.
Because activities can be printed ahead of time students can fill them out as they interact with the movie too.
Here’s a great effort at a “Complete the passage” page from a mini BrainPOPper:
Some activities include recall questions, as well as higher order thinking tasks, e.g. “Think about it”. The History of the UK activity sheet above contains a good example:
This activity could be completed as a whole class but would probably work best in small groups or as homework.
2. Get organised
Some activities include creative graphic organisers such as this one from our new Main Idea movie:
We also have blank graphic organisers available on the site which are great for you to use in a variety of lessons, BrainPOP and otherwise.
3. Vocabulary sheet
Every single activity has at least a vocabulary sheet. You can use these with students before watching the movie to assess prior knowledge, focus attention, or demonstrate understanding. Using the vocabulary sheet helps familiarise students with key vocabulary they’ll encounter in the movie.
It can also be used whilst your viewing the movie to practice note-taking skills. Remember to pause so students have time to write down definitions. Helpfully, words are listed in the order in which they appear in the movie.
Here’s an example of a vocabulary sheet from the History of the UK movie:
4. Hands-on practical
As well as activities which work on expanding vocabulary, exercising literacy and numeracy skills, we have included activities with a more “hands-on” practical element. For example, our Space Flight topic challenges the student to design a real rocket launch:
5. Time to spare?
In addition to integrating BrainPOP into lesson plans, remember that it only takes a few minutes to show a movie and take advantage of those in-between – unplanned – times by transforming them into teaching moments. Our class discussion page provides helpful tips on how to easily fit a lesson based on a news event into the curriculum you follow but you can also rely on activities to fill a quiet five minutes before lunch.
For example, the Elvis Presley topic features a word search:
However you choose to use them, make sure to take advantage of the pedagogical benefits available. A quick summary:
- Activities are typeable and printable
- Activity sheets are a helpful note-taking tool while watching the movies
- Activities can be completed either as a whole class on an interactive whiteboard, individually, or in small groups
- Return to the activity pages after watching the movie
- Assign activities for homework
As ever, if you have any classroom tips for how to use activities in lessons, we’d love to hear from you! Email firstname.lastname@example.org with lesson plans, tips and tricks.