They’re all wound up . . . and it’s differentiated too.

I can’t think of a kinder I’ve had yet that hasn’t loved to get their hands on a wind up toy.  If they love it, then somehow, someway . . . I’m gonna make it into an activity to get them ENGAGED.

But a wind up toy? Really? YES! You could use this for practicing any skill really, but for this one I used tally marks. 
I tier this activity by having two different large sheets of paper covered with different sets of tally marks.   One page is geared for my learners who were just starting to get the hang of counting by 5s and tally marks so the tally sets were smaller.  I also have another sheet which had much larger groups of tally marks.
Students each pick a side with their wind-up toy.  They were only allowed to twist the nob two turns.  (Believe me, we practice this).  While holding onto the gears so they don’t unwind, they count 1-2-3 and let go.  They are only allowed to touch their toy when everyone’s has stopped or if a toy is headed off their side, they may quickly turn it around and send it back. When everyone’s toy has stopped, they check the set of tally marks their toy has landed on or nearest to and count them up.  The person with the biggest (or smallest -sometimes we use a spinner to determine which one will be the criteria) gets a token or manipulative as a ‘point.’  When time math station time is up, the person with the most tokens is the  “Master Wind-up Toy Tally Mark Counter.”

That’s it! Engaging, differentiated and totally fun! Now go out there and wind ’em up!

Marsha Moffit McGuire

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