A learning frame of mind

September 12, 2014
Using the MEanderthal app

After the long summer break, getting back in the groove of class can be difficult for everyone. Mr. Meade in the History Department has been making the transition a little easier with some entertaining activities to get class started. He calls these activities “bell work.” Aptly positioned below a bell in his classroom, Mr. Meade leaves directions or a QR code with a fun activity that compliments the subject matter in class that students begin to do prior to class getting underway.

One such activity was using the Smithsonian’s MEanderthal app, which transforms a photo of yourself (or your friend) into the face of an early human. The Roots of Civilizations class, which is currently studying early humans, got a good laugh out of seeing each other as Neanderthals prior to getting into class.

“I like using ‘bell work’ to get students thinking about what we are going over in class, but in a fun, interactive way,” said Mr. Meade.

In a different activity this week, students created a collage of cave art from around the world, which is now displayed outside Mr. Meade’s classroom in School House I, Room 26. Not only did the Roots of Civilization re-interpret cave art, but they’ve posted questions about their artwork as well. The 9th grade invites any student or teacher to visit the cave art collages and write an answer or thought to the questions posed. Mr. Meade has left Post-it notes in the mailbox outside his door for writing answers the 9th grade’s questions making the project interactive with all students. 

Roots of Civilization Class at The Madeira School, Washington DC area