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‘Sorting sticks’ of a teacher

As Adam Simpson mentioned in one of his posts, we have millions of things to do as teachers. Sometimes there is very little time to create materials and develop tools. That’s why I prefer to use the tools / materials I create for different purposes.At the beginning of the year, I wrote my students’ names on the wooden sticks (the ones used to stir coffee) to call out the names of the students in the classroom by picking up one at each time. I call them “sorting sticks”, because they act as the “sorting hat” at Hogwarts in the book / film ”Harry Potter”.

6 Things to do using the sorting sticks:·

1. Making up pairs / groups (saves time and prevents the moans and groans:)

2. Drilling – asking questions, making up sentences etc. (helps them to listen to each other more effectively)·

3. Sharing tasks / parts of a project (so they have no chance to reject)

4. Using students’ names in the sample sentences (they can be deadly passionate about this:)

5. Assigning roles (before a role – play or an improvisation)

6. Assigning responsibilities (tidying up / putting the flash cards, bringing chalk / board markers, turning on the computer, looking up a word in the dictionary etc.)

If you want it to look more mysterious, you can keep them in a “sorting” hat like the one in “Harry Potter”. Do you have any more ideas about how to use the sorting sticks?


This post was first published here