Star Wars Day Buddy Activity: Uniting Grades with a Collaborative Pixel Poster

As teachers, we are always on the lookout for engaging, educational activities that captivate our students’ imaginations and foster a sense of community. With Star Wars Day (“May the Fourth Be With You”) around the corner, why not combine the excitement of this beloved saga with a creative and collaborative classroom project that you can do with multiple grade levels?

Our space theme Collaborative Pixel Poster is not just a fun art activity, but also a fantastic way to integrate reading, critical thinking, and teamwork into a big buddy and little buddy group lesson.

Get the Space Wars Collaborative Pixel Poster Here.

What are Grade Level Buddy Lessons?

A buddy activity in grade school is a collaborative learning approach where students from different grades are paired together to work on various educational tasks. This method is particularly beneficial as it pairs older students with younger ones, allowing them to serve as mentors.

During these activities, buddies might engage in reading, art projects, science experiments, or cultural celebrations, promoting a mix of academic and social learning. The older students typically guide and support their younger peers.

While some schools have a formal program in place, many buddy pairs happen organically between teachers. Also, buddy pairs do not have to be the oldest and youngest students – as a longtime 2nd and 3rd grade teacher, I found that pairing with both older and younger students had benefits.

Tips for Buddy Activities

If you are new to buddy activities, I have 4 tips to make the process go smoothly!

  • Careful Pairing: Match buddies thoughtfully. While random pairing saves a little time upfront, you might find you are swapping, managing behaviors, or otherwise needing to intervene more when you didn’t plan pairs with the other teacher. If you plan on meeting with buddies more than once, a quick 10 minute discussion with the buddy teacher to organize your groups will go a long way!
  • Clear Objectives: Set specific goals for the activity, so both buddies understand what they are working towards and can see the value in their cooperation.
  • Structured Activities: Plan activities that are engaging and suitable for different age groups. Ensure tasks are age-appropriate and can be completed collaboratively. Don’t just have the older buddies come into the younger classroom to help with the “easier” objectives. The best collaboration happens when both members are learning!
  • Role Definition: Assign roles to each buddy, with older students typically taking on leadership or mentorship roles. This helps maintain structure and ensures each student knows their responsibilities. Be sure older students understand how a mentorship differs from “just doing all the work.”
  • Work in the Younger Buddy Classroom: This is my personal preference mostly because lower grades will have more space dedicated to carpet space and the littles won’t fit in larger desks. Also, younger students tend to do better with a familiar and predicated environment.
  • Plan Ahead: For more lessons, each teacher should prep their students ahead of the lesson before meeting together. This allows for age-appropriate directions, discussion, and expectations. Then once meeting together, you are reviewing the project vs introducing it.

What are Collaborative Pixel Posters?

Each pixel poster is made up of 36 individual pieces. Students will color a piece (or pieces) of the larger poster according the code. Finally, they cut the piece out and assemble the individual pieces to create a poster. The finished poster is approximately 4 ft. x 4 ft.

You can learn more about using Collaborative Pixel Posters in your classroom here.

This activity includes four flexible ways to incorporate coloring:

  1. Ready made activity for the book. Read A Jedi You Will Be by Preeti Chhibber. Students answer questions about the book to determine the coloring code for the poster by completing a printable matching activity. If you don’t own the book, show students a read aloud from YouTube.
  2. Add your own questions and answers. The question and answer sheet can be edited right inside the PDF. This is a great option for test prep. Pick a topic, create 22 questions and answers and add them into the PDF before printing.
  3. Zero prep color by number. Just print the regular color by letter version. Students color following the key. No questions involved. This is great for testing week and sub plans!
  4. “Color” the digital version on Google Slides. Assign slideshow to students in Google classroom. Students use the fill tool to color the squares then print. The best option for virtual learning or computer lab lessons.

Pick which works best for you and your needs!

Collaborative Pixel Posters Make the Perfect Buddy Activity!

Collaborative Pixel Posters are a great activity for your buddies because it can be adapted and because it naturally lends itself to corporation and teamwork! Plus with 36 pieces included, you should have plenty for each pair to color.

How to Differentiate Collaborative Pixel Posters for Buddies

Older buddies can…

  • find the coloring code by watching the read aloud and answering the questions
  • tackle more intricate coloring patterns
  • handle the cutting
  • organize and assemble the finished pieces

Younger buddies can…

  • use the version with the coloring code already solved
  • color simpler pieces of the poster
  • help gather and organize the colors needed

As buddies finish their parts, they can do Star Wars yoga!

So this Star Wars Day, transform your classroom into a hub of creativity, teamwork, and make a memorable learning experience for your grade level buddies with a space themed collaborative pixel poster!

, , ,

Recent Posts

Popular Categories