Throwback Thursday!!!

I'm so so excited to link up with Cara Carroll and her Throwback Thursday linky party!! :) I'm throwing back all the way from Arizona which is a far ways from my home of Indianapolis, IN!! I love family reunions!!! I wish everyone a safe, fun filled and relaxing 4th of July!!! I can smell the ribs cooking right now as I type in the cabin! Yum!

Today I'm bringing back a post that's not all that old (April), but it is one of my absolute FAVORITE activities I've created for my classroom!! We've done this activity for the past 2 years, and I can't wait to add a little more to it this year to pull in writing and social studies with more activities on the actual court jobs! So I hope you like it!! Don't forget to check out all of the other great throw back posts!!  Thanks so much for stopping by!!!! :)
Original Post on April 30, 2013 (I changed the name of my blog in June so the old name is on the pictures. :)
The Genre's Court
Do you ever find books in your classroom library that were placed into the wrong book bin??  If you said YES, keep reading for a very interactive, innovative, and creative way to engage students in genres WHILE also keeping your books in the right places!!  Sounds like a WIN WIN  to me! :)

Check it out here.

So, who's watched the show, People's Court???  Well, as I played the theme song, surprisingly, a ton of my 2nd graders started raising their hands in excitement that they knew where it came from!!  I had NO idea that they would actually know it!

Well, anyway, I wanted to find a fun way to review genres and expanding it to make them prove it with evidence.  Enter, "The Genre's Court!"  I actually brought in my college graduation gown to wear as the "Publisher" or judge during the trials!  We play the theme song from you tube as I walk into the room and when the "authors" (defendants) and "critics" (plaintiffs) walk in and out of the "courtroom" (classroom).

Throughout the week during book club centers, my students have the chance to fill out a clipboard

sheet on a specific book that they found placed in the wrong book bin!  I don't know about you all, but I can't stand it when the books are misplaced after repeatedly going over the book system!! :)  Do they not realize how many hours it took to get that book system organized?!? haha :)  Luckily, I always have some great helpers that help me out!  However, this makes it FUN to find a book in the wrong place!  (Or at least they THINK it's in the wrong book bin)  This leads to holding The Genre's Court!  There are "Editors" (jurors), "Illustrators" (sketch artists drawing the scene in the room), "readers" (spectators), "News Reporters" (video tapes and interviews readers on the trial which in turn they create an iMovie on the iPads!! side note...I got a grant for 3 ipad minis for next year so I can't wait to use those for this part, too!!), and "Copywriter" (bailiff).  I even have my own gavel with my name "Judge Swisher" on it along with "The Genre's Court!!!" (My awesome co-teacher for reading bought it for me for Christmas!!!)
We move the desks around to make it look like my courtroom map, and we have several trials.  If after the "authors" give their evidence from the clipboard sheet (graphic organizer), the "editors" (whom also fill out a similar organizer taking notes to the evidence the authors state) find that the "authors" DID NOT defend their genre, the book is sent to jail until the next person brings it to court.  I put the book in a separate bin in which it does not return to the labeled book bins until it is defended in court.  If the "editors" find that the "authors" DID defend the genre, the book can return to the correct book bin! :)

I LOVE THIS ACTIVITY!!!  MY STUDENTS LOVE IT EVEN MORE (MAYBE :)!  They beg me to have genre court!  I usually try 1 time a month.  I occasionally move books in the wrong bins to make sure there are a variety of genres being used. Sneaky, I know! :)

My whole "The Genre's Court" is in my TPT store if you'd like to check it out!!

Court is dismissed! :)


  1. Replies
    1. Hi Jen!! Thank you so much! I absolutely love it!! I literally came up with the idea while we were going over genres, and I was telling them to prove it. hah That was it! The idea was born! :) Thanks so much for stopping by my blog!!


  2. Hi Nicole!

    I nominated you for the Liebster Award for new bloggers :) Visit my blog for some more information! I love reading your blog.

    One Fab Teacher

    1. Hi!!! Thank you soooo much!!! That's so exciting!!! I will definitely be over to your blog to see all the info!! :)

      Thanks again!!

  3. Hi Nicole, I'm your newest follower. I found you through a link about your Indiana meet up. That perked my attention because I live in Michigan, but just two miles north of the Indiana border. Plus, I teach 2nd grade and I'm always on the look out for other second grade friends. Cute blog!

    1. Hi Patty!! I'm so excited to have you following my blog!!! :) As a new blogger, it's so fun meeting so many teachers from all over! I'm actually from NW Indiana so not too far from Michigan at all! I, too, love finding other 2nd grade friends! I'm going to head over to your blog now! :)

      Thanks so much!!

  4. I have been following via instagram. I now follow your blog via bloglovin' and Google friend, and your TPT store :)
    My Second Sense

    1. Hi Tania!!! I, too, have been following you on instagram! I love it!! :) I'm heading over to your blog now!! Thank you so much for stopping by and following me!! I'm about to do the same! :)



I always LOVE to hear from other teachers and bloggers so thank you so much for taking the time to comment!! It's so exciting to meet new people who share in your passion!