Task cards are everywhere in education – at all levels – and for good reason! Task cards are simply questions/problems that can be printed, cut out, and used for all kinds of classroom activities.
I’ve named the task cards “I Can” Activity Questions just to make it more obvious what the content of my task cards are, because they are just that: a set of questions (mine are even broken into subskills over a main topic). The questions in my “I Can” Activity Questions span depth of knowledge levels 2 (skill/concept) and 3 (strategic thinking). This makes them perfect for practice during a unit, review before a test, or end-of-the-year review for state testing!
If you need any help brainstorming how to get the most out of your “I Can” activity questions – OR just ANY TASK CARDS you’ve purchased in general, this is where you want to be – I’ve created a list of 8 easy ways to use them with detailed descriptions to help you get started!
#1: ADDITIONAL BELLWORK
Post a screenshot of a single “I Can” activity question for review bellwork – as pictured below.
This my hack for a quick screenshot – if your Windows computer has Microsoft Office, then this should work for you!
- Hold down the windows key, Shift key, and s key all at the same time.
- Then drag your mouse to enclose whatever you would like to copy to your clipboard.
- Lastly, hold down the Ctrl key and p key to paste what you copied into any other program – Word, SmartNotebook, PowerPoint, and more!
#2: EXIT TICKETS
Need a good activity for closure? Just want to make sure your students understood the lesson? Or just have extra time at the end of class? Use exit tickets!
Print off one question for all students or different questions for each student. Give them about 3-5 minutes to complete the exit ticket. You can collect these and grade them later, or you can collect them and provide the answer and explanation as a last minute teaching moment.
#3: INDEPENDENT STUDENT PRACTICE / EARLY FINISHERS
The “I Can” Activity Questions can serve as excellent independent student practice. As a Title I Math teacher, I used this as a remediation activity. Since the questions are broken into subskill, it is easy to align this to a single student’s needs.
The questions can also be used in the general classroom for remediation OR for early finishers. When used for early finishers, I suggest providing your student with the answer key so they can receive immediate feedback on how they’re doing. (Also – be sure to provide rewards for completing this extra practice – they will love you for it!)
#4: PARTNER ACTIVITY
If your students are a fan of competition, then play a head-to-head game with the “I Can” activity questions!
Cut out the questions and put them in a pile face down and print off the answer sheet. (You can separate by subskills or have them work on all 32-questions!)
One student draws a card (but have both students work out the question). When both has finished, they reveal the answer sheet. If the student who drew has the correct answer, they keep the card; however, if the first student is incorrect and the second student is correct, the second student steals the card. If neither student gets the correct answer, it is set aside.
Continue this way until the cards or time runs out; I recommend this activity for 10-15 minutes. The student with the most cards wins!
#5: PROGRESS MONITORING / REMEDIATION
Included with my “I Can” Activity Questions is a progress monitoring form- which is ideal for Title I Math Teachers and small remediation groups.
Use any of the implementation methods above, but then track the results in the form. You can then easily identify target subskills to remediate because the questions are grouped by subskills!
#6: SMALL GROUP / CENTER ACTIVITY
Need something other than a boring worksheet for your centers? Yet another use for the “I Can” Activity Questions!
You can simply set up four centers, one for each subskill, and have students rotate every 8-10 minutes. The partner activity listed above can also work well for groups of two-on-two and three-on-three.
#7: TASK CARDS
There are MANY ways to use task cards for whole group activities in your classroom. Check out 10 Task Card Games to Engage Students to get some ideas.
One of my favorites is “Around the World” where students have to search to find hidden task cards and work them out in a given amount of time. (Don’t underestimate how easily students can find your hidden questions!)
#8: UNIT REVIEW / TEST PREP
Use any of the ideas from above to have a fun review for your unit assessment or end-of-year test or insert my questions into your go-to review games.
For example, if you’re tech savvy and want to create a Jeopardy review game, you already have four categories. Just screenshot the questions (using the hack from above) and insert them into your favorite template!
From time to time I’ll add things to this list, so if you have any ideas – large or small, comment below. I’d love to incorporate YOUR idea into this post!