Reflection Activities

We believe that providing students with the time for structured reflection about their Wow Project, enables them to further understand both the importance of generosity and the impact of their work on our community. You can engage your class in reflection in any way that you see appropriate for your students. Check out our suggestions below if you are looking for ideas and activities to use with your students. And, don’t forget to share your students’ reflections with us! We love to know how their work with Wow has impacted them.

Partner Interviews:
Have your students pair up and interview each other about their project. You can either have them design their own interview questions, or give them questions to follow.
Talk Show Simulation
Have your students create a mock talk show. Give one student the job of hosting the show (you can have a few students take on this roll and take turns hosting) and another 4 students who are guests on the show as experts. Together with the host, the audience interviews the experts about their Wow Project, generosity, and the community needs of the Wood River Valley.
Charge your students with creating a Ted Talk on Generosity and the Wood River Valley. Give them a time limit (keep it short) and specific parameters (you must define generosity and discuss how it impacts life in the Wood River Valley, how helping the valley through X nonprofit makes it a better place)
This is a great way to lead your students in a group discussion about generosity and reflect on your project. Begin by drawing a large Y on the board or a piece of chart paper. Label the sections of the Y with the following symbols: a hear, an eye, and an ear. Now, ask your students to briefly recap what you just did for your project. Then explain to them that with this in mind you are going to address three questions:
What does generosity sound like?
What does generosity look like?
What does generosity feel like?
As your students discuss, take notes on the chart (or ask various students to be scribes). When you conclude your discussion post the chart in the classroom for students to view in the days to come (you can even have them add on to it if they come up with ideas later).
This is a straightforward reflection approach that you can make as long or short as you want. You can use the opportunity to have your students practice skills they are working on in Language Arts (maybe it’s paragraph writing, or just writing a complete sentence) or just give them a chunk of time to get their thoughts down on paper. You could give them a specific prompt to follow or just ask them to free write.
Divide your students into groups of four. Each group gets a beach towel and a beach ball. The task is to use the beach towel to bounce and catch a beach ball. Each person grabs a corner of the beach towel. The inflated beach ball is placed in the middle of the beach towel. Together the group must cooperate to bounce the ball into the air and to catch it again. Each group can keep score and the results compared. Alternatively, you can divide into groups of 8 with 2 beach towels and a single beach ball. The task here is to bounce the beach ball from one beach towel to the next. You can also line up all of the groups holding beach towels in a large circle and bounce the ball from one beach towel to the next around the room. When the game is over, ask how easy it was to do the first time compared to the last time? Did you notice that it takes cooperation to all work together on the common goal of launching or catching the ball? How is cooperating an act of generosity? How did you have to cooperate to complete your Wow Project? What different organizations came together today to support the community? What did your cooperation produce? What other types of generosity could your class cooperate together to do?
Adapted from: Character Council of Greater Cinncinati and Northern Kentucky http://www.charactercincinnati.org/EducatorBulletins/Dec2012Generosity.pdf

Line up your class in two lines facing each other. The students facing each other are partners. If you have an odd number of students, then one student will have a “bye” round. Come up with a question that each person needs to answer that relates to your Wow Project. It could be, “how were you generous during your Wow Project? Or, “How can you be generous as a kid?” The idea is to find a question that encourages sharing and gets your students thinking about their project and Generosity. You will only need one question. Announce the question and have each partner share the answer. Now the partners have a thumb war. Have them clasp fingers of their right hands with their thumbs up. Now they all chant together, “One, Two, Three, Four, Let’s have a Thumb War.” While they chant, they move their thumbs back and forth, trading places being on the left or right side. Once the chant is done, the war begins. The first person to pin the other’s thumb for several seconds wins. You can keep score by determining how many people on each side won and keeping a tally or you can just play round to round. Now have one of the lines take one step to the left. The left-most person will need to move all the way to the right. Each person will now have a new partner. Have each person in this new partnership, answer the question posed in the beginning and then stage another thumb war. You can play until the original partners are partnered again or until time runs out. At the end, ask if they modified their answer to the question after hearing other’s responses. Did they hear any responses that were similar or very different from their own?
Adapted from: Character Council of Greater Cinncinati and Northern Kentucky http://www.charactercincinnati.org/EducatorBulletins/Dec2012Generosity.pdf
Have your students create posters that illustrate generosity, the mission of the nonprofit you visited, or the importance of community engagement. Display them in your classroom or in the hallways at school.
Use a prompt of your own or one we provide below to guide your class in a discussion that reflects on the days’ project and the importance of generosity. You can set aside as much as you like for this. This approach can be a great quick reflection onsite or once you return to school from a project. You can spend as little as five or ten minutes discussing, depending on the age of your students.
This quick method is a great way to end the school day after your Wow Project. Give each student a 3X5 notecard or a sticky note. Ask students to write down one word or one sentence (you chose) that describes how they were generous during their project or how being generous made them feel. Collect the cards as “ticket” for exiting the classroom.
On a bulletin board, construct a large apple tree. The apples should be cut-outs that the students can write on. Have them write ways they can be generous and ways that they were generous through their Wow Project. (If you want to make this reflection longer, you can read the book The Giving Tree before introducing the tree in your classroom). This can also be a great way to introduce the concept of generosity before you begin your project.
Legend has it that Hemingway was once challenged to write a story in only six words: “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.” In November 2006, SMITH Magazine asked its readers for their own Six-Word Memoirs. Since then, the phenomenon of Six-Word Memoirs has taken off; Smith has it’s own website: http://www.sixwordmemoirs.com/, magazine, and several book publications. Six Word Memoirs are a fun and straight-forward way to get your students to cohesively express their thoughts on just about anything. We think they’d make a great reflection tool for your project. Challenge your students to write a six word story about generosity or their project experience. You can ask them to compose them on any medium you like; one idea is to have students record their stories on slips of colorful paper and then post them on the wall OR compose them electronically and send them off to Wow! We’d love to read your students stories and may even post them on our own website.