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Plenaries aim to:

• help pupils understand and remember what has been learned
• create a sense of gain, completion and satisfaction
• take stock of where the class is in the teaching sequence
• take learning further and deeper if possible
• recognise achievements of the class and the individuals in it
• allow the teacher to assess learning and plan accordingly
• stimulate anticipation for the next phase of learning
• instil a habit of reflection on learning

Taboo cards   The aim is to describe the word at the top of the card without using any of the ‘Taboo’ words underneath. Pupils play ‘Taboo’ in groups of three. One pupil is guessing, one is describing and the other is checking that they don't use any of the taboo words. Example FILTERING soluble solid liquid Pupil 1 must describe FILTERING without using any of the taboo words underneath ie. souble,solid or liquid. Pupil 2 must guess what the taboo word is from the description. Pupil 3 is the judge. After 3 cards the pupils swap roles. Development Pupils can make their own cards as they move through topics, which can be used again at various stages to keep a check on knowledge. The teacher can use this activity as a whole group plenary; describe a word that the whole class can try to guess. Download various sets of Taboo Cards. Each set can be identified by a different back.
Taboo Cards 8I Heating and Cooling TABOO WORDS
( 32 k)
Taboo Cards 8I Heating and Cooling CARD BACK
( 51 k)
Print out the Taboo Words on card. Then turn over the card and print out the card back. Cut out along the black lines.
Taboo Cards 7L The Solar System TABOO WORDS
( 32 k)
Taboo Cards 7L The Solar System CARD BACK
( 72 k)
Print out the Taboo Words on card. Then turn the card over and print out the card back. Cut out along the black lines.
loop games   When used as a plenary activity, the intention of a loop games is to further consolidate prior learning. Instructions Issue the Loop Game at the end of a learning sequence. Time the pupils through the loop. Encourage them to complete the loop more quickly next time. Tell them that there is a world record of "n" seconds and that you will give a prize to them if it can be beaten. The Loop Game plenary is best used with basic information about a topic being studied. This information will remain relevant for the whole topic.
LOOP GAME 7J Electrical Circuits (Questions)
( 25 k)
LOOP GAME 7J Electrical Circuits (Answers)
( 25 k)
Print out the Loop Game (Questions) on one side of the card, then the Loop Game (Answers) on the other side. Cut out along the black lines.
SEQUENCING (Electric Bell)
( 26 k)

Individual sentences of notes on an idea or process are made into card strips.
Individually or in pairs, pupils arrange them in the correct sequence and stick them in their books.

An example for the working of an electric bell can be downloaded above.

( 41 k)
Posted : 11th Feb 2003
Download this plenary activity for use with your classes.

This is a variation on a loop game and was sent in by Helen Almond, a NQT at Haslingden HS, Rossendale. Many thanks Helen.


1. Cut the sentences out into strips and randomly distribute to pupils.
2. The pupil with the START CARD begins reading out the sentence.
3. The pupil with the correct ending completes the sentence and reads out the next sentence.
4. The game continues and ends with the last complete sentence.

SYMBOLIC - learning the symbols for elements
Symbolic is a game that allows students or teachers to learn or review their learning on the symbols of the elements of the periodic table. There are two versions, a simple version for the first 20 elements of the periodic table and the expert version which tests over 100 elements. Are you up to the challenge?

Click to download and play the games below. If you need a free Flash Player to use the activities click on the appropriate link.
Symbolic (first twenty elements) ( 350 k)
Symbolic (expert version) ( 350 k)
Download free Flash Player


Screen shot


Unit 7D: Variation and classification Section

10: a. How do scientists classify living things?

- that vertebrates include mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, amphibians

This activity is a quick test e.g. a starter or plenary activity, that looks at the differences between the five groups of vertebrates.

Click here to view the resource
( 45 k)
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