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The Best Tip for Cut and Paste Activities
How many times have you done a cut and paste activity with your students only to find pieces mixed up and all over the floor? You, my friend, are not alone! Cut and paste activities are developmentally appropriate for little kiddos, but can easily turn a great lesson into a disaster. Have no fear, because I’m here to share this classroom management trick to help solve the cut and paste dilemma once and for all.
Benefits of Cut and Paste Activities
Don’t skip out on the cutting and pasting activities with your kiddos just yet. Let’s first take a look at the benefits of cut and paste worksheets with young children.
- Develop fine motor skills
- Bilateral coordination (using both hands)
- Keeps their attention: build focus
- Increases visual perception
- Using the scissors builds hand strength
- Engaging for the students
The Problem with Cut and Paste Worksheets
As a kindergarten teacher, I loved teaching the students how to do cut and paste worksheets. Their faces would light up once they realized they were allowed to cut and do the work on their own. So precious. However, with that excitement also came movement and disorganization.
I bet you can relate to this scenario…the kids are sitting in their center, working hard on their cut and paste Making Words worksheets, carefully cutting out each of their letter tiles. Just then, a kid’s arm brushes across the table, and everyone’s letter tiles fall to the floor.
Now, just as you are getting started with your guided reading group, you hear a table full of kiddos on the verge of a total breakdown.
They are shouting your name, trying to tattle on the friend for “losing their pieces”, and crying because they can no longer finish their work.
The pieces are all over the table and floor, and nobody knows which pieces belongs to who.
At this point, all you want is less interruptions in the classroom; right?
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The problem with cutting and pasting in a classroom is students lose, misplace, and mix-up the pieces. It happens all the time! And, if it hasn’t happened to you, yet, then you are in luck, my friend!
I’ve got just the classroom management tip you need for less distractions and interruptions.
How To Solve the Cut and Paste Disasters
Brace yourself…the BEST tip when doing cut and paste worksheets with your students is…..SCRIBBLING.
Yes, taking a crayon or marker and scribbling all over the BACK of the worksheet will now be your favorite tool in your bag of classroom management tricks.
- Make sure each kid at the table has a DIFFERENT COLOR crayon or marker. For example, if there are 4 kids to a table, tell them to take out any crayon they want, but it cannot be the same color that someone else picked at that table. Here’s another trick, if you have a table of students that you know are going to argue over the color choice, don’t give them an option. Just quickly point to each of them and say a color crayon to take out.
- Once they take out their crayon, have them FLIP THE PAPER OVER, and scribble all over the back of the worksheet- Not just the section they are going to cut, but all over! I had to teach them scribbling isn’t the same as coloring. We are not trying to cover every square inch of the paper; just making large stroke marks to cover top-bottom, side-to-side.
- Now, if a piece should fall onto the ground, or get mixed into someone else’s pile, they can flip it over and quickly know who it belongs to. For example, if Taylor has purple scribbles on the back of her paper, but just picked up a piece that has yellow, she knows it doesn’t belong to her.
I promise you, this tip for cut and paste activities will work like magic! You will have less student interruptions, less tattling over nothing, and more complete and accurate student work!
Now, rather than being frustrated over inaccurate work (when student pieces are mixed up), you can reward them with a chapstick smelly spot, or have them put a sticker on their sticker chart for completing their work independently.
Try it, and let me know what you think. Leave a comment below, or tag me on Instagram @littlelearningcorner.
If you are interested in the cut and paste worksheets for kids shown in the pictures on this post, you can grab a printable set, today!
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