I had no intention of posting tonight, SOA is coming on soon so I am hurling through my evening routines with a purpose but I couldn't help link up a silly activity with Holly for Tuesday's Tried It Tuesday, basically it was the only highlight of my day so its completely worth sharing.

By 5th period today I needed a chuckle and while it might be cruel to use your students to entertain you, its just so darn easy to do sometimes.

Do you ever feel like your students just aren't listening to you? 

I feel like I get either the:

Or they seem like they are listening but the truth is they are just hearing:

I do the normal teacher thing: ask if they have any questions, check for understanding, have them access themselves, give time for them to figure it out, leave instructions in their agendas, on the boards...etc.

I could do a song and dance routine while giving instructions I think I would receive the same level of interest/understanding sometimes.

While the annoyed part of me just wants to leave them all be and let them fail, the truth is I can't. Not only because my luck would be that an administrator would walk in but also I just can't handle that many failures. Stupid overachiever in me.

But sometimes I like to make a point about how little they listen, like today.

Today we used a listening comprehension activity for their warm up: basically there are twenty questions that make you do silly things like hop up and down 10 times or take your left shoe off and leave it on your desk. BUT the catch is the students really don't need to do any of these activities.

At the beginning of class I pass out the paper with the questions and I tell the students that they must read all the questions before they answer any of them. 

Side note: If you skip down to the last question it tells you to only complete question one and two, turn your paper over and you will get a prize. And out of 20 kids today 1 kid received a prize.

I walk around and grade them just like a normal warm up and you see them start taking their shoes off or yelling 'I found the answer' and I try to hold in my snickering. And then there is the single kid in the corner who followed instructions and he is just staring at the other wakadoo's in your room and full on laughing at them. I provide him the prize and allow this to keep going for another few minutes until you hear the "aw Miss that was cruel" or "you made us do all that for nothing."

And then I pull the whole class in and we discuss the warm up and what it means to be an active listener. 

Not only does this activity provide me a good chuckle it also serves as a helpful reminder to the students about what active listening means. And starting today I plan to not repeat instructions more than once...or something like that.

Here is the list of questions I used for listening activity, its not cute or frilly but feel free to use them if you would like.

Following Instructions Quiz

Read this whole paper first, and then follow the directions given. You have 10 minutes to complete this test. The instructions are important, so read carefully!

1. Write your name in the upper right hand corner
2. Put the date in the left hand corner
3. Write your age: ________
4. Write the name of the President of the U.S.: ______________
5. Call the name of a friend, wave to them, and say hello.
6. Stand up and shake someone’s hand.
7. Get two others to tell you their favorite colors. Write their favorite colors here ____________ and _____________.
10. Put your left shoe on the desk and leave it there.
11. Give a high five to four different people.
12. Tell two others your middle name.
13. Add 237, 4986, and 866. Answer: __________________
14. After you do number 13, yell “I found the answer!”
15. Write the name of your favorite food. _______________
16. Sit down and stand up 10 times as fast as you can. Record how long it took you here: ________________
17. Print the name of the planet you live on ____________
18. Look to the person at the right and tell them something you like about them. 
19. Draw one red circle and two blue triangles on the bottom of this page.
20. If you read all the instructions first, good job. Skip all the instructions and only do #1 and #2. Then sit quietly at your desk until time is called. 

Hope your Tuesday went a little better than mine! On the up side tomorrow is Hump Day!!!

- The Babbling Box!


  1. Oh my gosh, this is GENIUS. Thank you so much for linking up!! I feel your pain; I sometimes want to get my Glee on and do a musical number in class just to get my students to pay attention, but I feel like even that wouldn't work (just like you said). I definitely want to try this. :)

    - Sarah Beth
    Miss White's Classroom

  2. I feel like this has happened to me at school before.. But I don't quite remember. Good idea.. at least ONE of your students listens....... !!

  3. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAH! I haven't tricked this class yet with this, but I'm so going to do it. They will be so mad, but it will be so funny! Can you hear my evil laugh??? still haven't started loser. I got sucked into Season 2 of New Girl. P.S. Your captcha hates me again.
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

  4. I have used something similar to this and only about one student will actually follow directions! I think I need to do it again. Haha!! I love your videos in the post. Could you see me sitting here smiling and nodding my head? :)
    Fourth Grade Flipper

  5. I've done this before to teach the importance of reading and following the directions on the paper. I make my first step: Read everything carefully before you begin, and then I end with: Only complete numbers 1 & 2. It's always crazy to see how many students just gloss over that first direction!