Authentic Lessons for 21st Century Learning

Kick Me

K20 Center | Published: September 16th, 2020 by K20 Center


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Kick Me

This strategy gets students on their feet to actively engage with vocabulary and make connections—no kicking involved.

Kick Me


Students wear signs on their backs, each with a vocabulary term related to the lesson printed on it, then work with their classmates to interact with the terms in a meaningful way. In this activity, students either create a definition of the term with one of their classmates, or they practice using the term by putting it in context with the help of their classmates' terms.


  1. Attach vocabulary terms to the students' backs (like a "kick me" sign).

  2. Students pair up (or have a partner chosen for them).

  3. Students ask their partner questions to determine the vocabulary term on their own backs, but there are also quite a few variations to this activity, though. Students could identify the partner whose term would best be associated with their own (e.g., find the synonym/antonym to their word), group up according to a central theme (e.g., Union vs. Confederacy), or search for missing words to an equation or analogy from the correct answers that have been placed on students' backs.

  4. Once students have successfully completed the activity, they may return to their seats.