Sunday, March 10, 2013

Super Speed 1000 - Part II

Super Speed 1000: Part II - Super Speed Science (S3)
Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery – C.C. Colton
Super Speed 1000 worked so well in my bilingual Science classroom that I realized the value of creating a list of Science vocabulary words to help my English Language Learners (ELLs). I named the list Super Speed Science (S3). While all of my students increased their Science vocabulary fluency levels, my ELLs showed a marked improvement in just a few weeks. I would like to share with you how I developed and used Super Speed Science to inspire you to personalize Super Speed 1000 to match your content area. 

My first listing of words was a simple compilation grouped by topic. There were 6-8 vocabulary words per line. Here is a line from my original S3:
Electrical, insulator, conductor, circuit, battery, switch
As you can see, it was simply a list of vocabulary words. S3 has the same rules as Super Speed 1000 and uses the same Star Reward sheet. Based on my experience with Super Speed 1000, I knew my students were going to enjoy playing S3 and they were going to improve their reading abilities. I thought I was good to go.

When I introduced S3 to my students, it was greeted with enthusiasm; however within a couple of days of observing S3 in use, I realized my students would benefit more if the word order was designed to reinforce Science concepts. So I redesigned the words. Now, instead of a being straight vocabulary compilation, Science facts are reviewed as the words are read.  Here is an example of the change:
Insulator, stops, energy: plastic, rubber, wood, cloth
Conductor, lets, energy, pass: metal, copper, iron, silver

My experience with S3 has been very positive. At first my ELLs read the words without confidence. Then, after two weeks of daily use, I heard them read the words with mastery. It was a marked improvement. In addition, I am able to add words and change the list as needed. For example, on a recent test, most of my students missed a question because they did not know the meaning of the word “brass”. Now, they have penciled-in “brass” to the list of metals on their “Conductor” row of S3.

I hope my experience with S3 has inspired you to take the materials we are given in Whole Brain Teaching and personalize them to fit your class.


  1. What a great post! As a sixth grade science teacher I made up a game for Super Speed Science too, but I think I like your better!! You can read bout my version here, but don't be surprised if you see anew post soon with new rules for the game! Such an inspiration, thanks!

  2. Hi there. Great idea. I was just talking to my team science teacher and we saw the need for something exactly like this as I am already using Superspeed 1000 for Language Arts. Do you sell this resource anywhere because I would love it???