Try this idea that I picked up during our National Train-the-Trainer Institute in Chicago last week.
1. Give each student a paper plate and a writing utensil.
2. On your screen, present 4 or 5 multiple choice questions, one at a time. The question can have 2-4 choices, but each choice will be linked with a shape. For example:
"Students should be able to use cell phones in school."
a. yes - use triangles for eyes
b. no - use ovals for eyes
"I know all I need to know about internet security."
a. yes - use a square for a nose
b. no - use a pentagon for a nose
These types of questions would lead to the development of an opinion face. You can also design content review questions such as:
Which of the following is not necessary for growing plants?
a. sunlight - use suns for eyes
b. water - use tear drops for eyes
c. salt - use a square for eyes
d. nutrients - use ovals for eyes
As the students are drawing their faces, the teacher can wander the room glancing at their creations and gathering formative assessment data.
Thanks to the teachers who shared this strategy (whose names I have unfortunately lost track of!)