Studies show that students learn more content and retain it longer, develop higher-order problem-solving and reasoning abilities, and improve social skills through small group cooperative learning. The Envelope, Please is a teaching tool that helps you achieve all these goals.
Prepare an envelope for each group.
On the back of each envelope write 3-5 statements/clues about the subject/item/theme, etc. you are focusing on and wish for them to learn about. Clues and answers should be different for each group.
Write the name of the subject/item/theme, etc. on a card and put it inside the envelope.
Distribute one envelope per group. Guide the groups to discuss the clues on their envelope and predict what’s inside.
After a predetermined amount of time, announce, “The envelope, please.” The groups open their envelopes to discover if their predictions were correct.
Conclude the activity by having each group share their clues and answers with the class.
Benefits of Group Work. Washington University. Published online October 3, 2017. https://teachingcenter.wustl.edu/resources/active-learning/group-work-in-class/benefits-of-group-work/
SOS: The Envelope Please. Discovery Education. Published online December 1, 2014. http://blog.discoveryeducation.com/blog/2014/12/01/sos-the-envelope-please/