Skip to main content

Week 3

Image result for perseverance
As the week comes to a close, I feel like the students and I are settling in.  In preparation for our upcoming Article of the Week Assignment,  we practiced annotating  another article "What it Takes to be Great."   I showed them a few short clips of some people who are "great" in their field-Tiger Woods, Michael Jordan, and a classical pianist.  We discussed how all of these people make what they do look so easy.Of course, in the article we learned just how much TIME these people put into becoming great!  After reading and annotating the article, students reflected on how confident they feel about annotating the text and describe, in their own words what it means to annotate.  

"Instead of quickly reading through and having to reread something, I learned to read slowly and REALLY read it.  It (annotating) helped because I knew what I was reading, and I actually understood it."

Based on their responses, I feel we are ready to move on to the second part of the Article of the Week assignment which is writing a one page summary/ response. I will model (not very glamorous) that part of the assignment and have kids practice with me. Then, students should be able to tackle the assignment solo!

On another note, I wanted to share the six-word memoirs from each of my classes.  Students seemed to enjoy this assignment and most put careful thought  into each word!  Not only did I get to teach about syntax, diction, connotation, and denotation, I learned so much about my students-in just six words!

Period 0 Slide Show      Period 2 Slide Show                   Period 4 Slide Show

Popular posts from this blog

Ditch those Reading Logs: Try Flipgrid Instead

If you've read my posts or follow me on Twitter, you know how I feel about pointless projects and homework!  This year I made it official and ditched homework.  It's the best decision I've ever made as a teacher.  My students are loving it, I am loving it, and I think most of their parents are loving it! I have completely transformed the way I run my classroom and feel like my students are more engaged and excited than ever. 

Student Example (Click to watch)

Like homework, I never felt quite right about assigning reading logs.  Whenever my own kids had to read a book on their own for school, they were initially excited. First, they were told they had to read twenty minutes each night. Then the dreaded reading logs began.  They had to write  down what pages they read, as well as a summary.  Urgh! I can only imagine lying on the beach with my own book and having to complete a reading log.  No thanks!  And I am not going to lie. I just might have signed one of my son's read…

Have a Dance Party Before Class Starts

This year I decided to play music as students are entering my classroom and before the final bell rings.  I had no idea what a difference it would make!  Why didn't I do this before?  It creates a positive, upbeat mood and seems to energize my students and ME! 

At first I thought they'd complain when I blasted disco tunes by artists like Chic, The Bee Gees, and Vickie Sue Robinson ("Turn the Beat Around").   I thought they'd groan when I played Bon Jovi, Journey, and Whitesnake. I thought they'd roll their eyes when I played clean versions of songs by Tupac and Snoop Dogg.  I really thought they'd lose it when I played Gypsy Kings.  NOPE!  They loved it!  I had NO idea that my kids would react they way they did.  Here are the results:

If I don't have time to put the music on, several kids will ask, "Where's our dance party?" I really like Pandora because I can create my own stations.  If you're looking for a way to create a positive vi…

Creating a Cell Phone Sanctuary

Over the past few years, I have noticed a change in my students.  Not only are they tethered to their phones, but they are more anxious than ever.  In the past two school years, I have had at least three students experience school anxiety so severe that they could not come to school.   Those are just MY students.  This year I have had one student leave our school after her mother spent three weeks trying to drag her to class each morning as her daughter screamed, cried, and sometimes refused to get out of the car.  According to an article titled "Teen Anxiety and Depression: the Kids are not Alright" published in 2016, "In 2015, about 3 million teens ages 12 to 17 had had at least one major depressive episode in the past year, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. More than 2 million report experiencing depression that impairs their daily function. About 30% of girls and 20% of boys–totaling 6.3 million teens–have had an anxiety disorder, according t…