#BookSnaps Scavenger Hunt

February 11, 2018

Have you seen the extraordinary #BookSnaps from Kimberly Snodgrass and her students?

#BookSnaps Scavenger Hunt?

When I saw this title, I was HOOKED! First, I love playing hide-and-seek; so, a scavenger hunt reminds me of that game. (Yes, I’m a kid trapped in in an adult body.) Next, add #BookSnaps to the mix. BOOM! I had to know more.

I asked Kimberly and her students to share their learning with us, and they agreed to create a guest post and video reflections. You are in for a REAL treat. Sit back and enjoy the ride. Check out all of this fun, piratey #BookSnaps action!

Kimberly’s Reflections ~

#BookSnaps Scavenger Hunt

I (Kim) get it now, I really do! As I was watching the Super Bowl, I found myself engaged in a way that I hadn’t been before. I had a purpose. I was creating. I was analyzing plays, searching for a deeper meaning. I was critically thinking about football. Say, what?! How did that happen?  My wheels were spinning, and holy cow, it was the fastest Super Bowl that I’ve ever “watched”!

Before I tell you about this epiphany, I need to know something. Can you keep a secret? This is kind of a big one. Well, since you promised…I’m from Nebraska, where we bleed Husker Red, and I don’t really get all that excited about football. I’m mostly in it for the sparkle; the food and fun environment! Shh! Don’t tell…you promised!  However, in all seriousness, this Super Bowl was special. This year I really was paying attention, entirely hooked, in a Teach Like a Pirate kind of way! It was my first experience with #SuperBowlSnaps, a cousin to Tara Martin’s #BookSnaps that she and Denis Sheeran created in 2017. (For more information, check out the original #SuperBowlSnaps blog here.)

So, I do get it. I understand why my students have grown to love #BookSnaps so much. It takes something that they might not be passionate about and hooks them into learning the content. #BookSnaps takes something that may have memorized and stored in short-term memory for a test and spices it up in a way that is fun, and above all… engaging. With #BookSnaps, students are manipulating content, creating, reflecting, and sharing. These components create connections to the material that allows the content to be stored in long-term memory. When you’re in teaching, you know…long-term memory is exactly where we want our course content stored.  If you’d like to know more about the science behind #BookSnaps, check out Tara’s video here. She explains the research in everyday, easy to understand language.

We are now on a weekly #BookSnaps Scavenger Hunt in my English class. Our weekly hunt is a 42-minute challenge that entails collaboration, critical thinking, emotional reflection, and cognition of  ELA content. Typically, students pair up with a partner the minute they enter the room on Fridays. Together, they head into their Google Classroom to discover their challenge for the day. The next thing I know, they are off and on the hunt for a book or text to demonstrate their understanding of a skill that they’ve learned. Before long, they are deeply immersed in creating a #BookSnaps, a work of educational art.

We’ve experimented with different technology mediums to create our snaps, but have found that Google Drawings amped up with the Bitmoji extension and Alice Keeler’s Webcam Snapshot extension is what works best for us. Tara Martin has easy to follow tutorials explaining the many different ways that #BookSnaps can be created regardless of the grade level you teach. To be quite honest, I really didn’t do any other “teaching” on how to create #BookSnaps. This technology is relevant to our students, it is the language they speak, they “get it”.

We’ve done #BookSnaps on quotes/citations, figurative language, favorite first lines/introductions, types of sentences, and most recently, journal responses, and most recently we’ve used it as a peer editing tool. I’ve found that the possibilities truly are endless. Literally, endless. In 5 minutes, my students brainstormed this list of ways teachers could use #BookSnaps in the classroom to enhance learning. Let’s just say, we could easily double the length of this list if given another 5 minutes.

Not only are the possibilities endless, but the benefits of #BookSnaps are infinite as well.  Have you heard of the Safari Hook? Well, if you haven’t you need to read through this list of Teach Like a Pirate Hooks. The Dave Burgess Safari Hook is something magical itself. Getting students out of the classroom and into a different environment creates an element of excitement. The typical #BookSnaps Scavenger Hunt leads students to a magical place; the library! Don’t we all want our students excited about the library? Seriously, this is a place students don’t get to nearly enough. Not only are they getting there more often now, but they are being exposed to books and endless literature that would have otherwise likely never found its way into their precious hands.

This snappy little adventure has had a few bumps, just like trying anything new does. But, WOW! We’ve had so much fun! Who knew that something so simple could have such an impact on learning? I thought this would be a one-time thing. Boy, was I wrong. The moment I introduced #BookSnaps to my students, I realized it was special. It’s the kind of thing that makes learning sparkle. I’m teaching the same content that I would have been otherwise, but now with #BookSnaps infused into it, it’s relevant, more meaningful, and incredibly memorable. Check out the hashtag #BookSnaps on Twitter and join in on the fun!

Kimberly Snodgrass


(Back to Tara)

Let’s Hear From the Students

You don’t want to miss these wonderful responses from Kim’s middle school students. Adorable and influential. 

Flipgrid Student Reflections: https://flipgrid.com/030628

Student #BookSnaps Reflection Slides: https://goo.gl/6oUCyJ

Did you check the links from the students? Go no further, until you do.

Listen to them. For REAL; they are our heartbeat!

Thanks for checking out the #BookSnaps Scavenger hunt. If you don’t follow Kim on Twitter, do so now; she is rockin’ innovation in the classroom. And, if you try this activity (or your own spin on it) in your school or classroom, please tag us @TaraMartinEDU, @KImSnodgrass, and #BookSnaps.

Keep snappin’. Keep connecting with kiddos. And, be REAL.

Own your awesomeness in education and share it with the world!

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