We are beginning a research/non-fiction unit on frogs (since we will be getting a class pet soon!). Before I told the kiddos what the unit was about (and what pet we were going to get), I had them complete a carousel activity. I set up 6 stations around the room with pictures and chart paper. The chart paper was pre-labeled with "What I Notice" and "What I Wonder".
The students worked in groups of 3 and had 3 minutes at each station to talk about what they noticed. Each group had a different colored marker and wrote down some of their observations and questions.
It was really fun to see what things they noticed (and what things grossed them out!). It was a great way to introduce the unit and get their brains engaged. They did eventually guess that we would be learning about frogs.
I am working on the complete unit as they work on it, but I will eventually post the final unit to TpT when it is done. In the meantime, you might want to check out my Can We Get a Pet Unit which kicked off the whole project you see here!
Have you used a carousel in class before? What other engagement ideas do you use?