Rules For Posting To This Blog and Weekly Blog Question

1. Only use your first name (no last names, addresses, IM screen names, etc.)
2. Show respect and consideration of others when posting and commenting. This includes individuals, students, organizations, political parties, colleagues, etc.
3. Check all posts for spelling and grammar errors before posting.
4. Protect the privacy of others. Gain permission from other people before you write about them. Avoid sharing someone else's last name. Use job titles or pseudonyms when writing about experiences with your co-workers or students.
5. Watch your language. Use politically correct and non-offensive language.
6. Make sure you write about things that are factual.
7. Keep your postings education-oriented. Avoid discussing plans for the weekend, etc.

This week I would like you to use your imagination. You have just won the lottery and will leave your teaching post immediately to travel around the world. As you leave your keys you meet your replacement. You are asked to give this new teacher just ONE piece of advice. What would that be, and why? Enjoy your world expedition!

Blog Post - Week 7
This past week in my own teaching I felt a little disconnected which prompts my question to you, "What was the moment (or moments) when I felt most disconnected or disengaged as a teacher - the moment(s) I said to myself, I'm just going through the motions here?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 6
For the past couple of weeks you have experienced asynchronous online learning (doing modules by yourself). Previously this semester you have experienced synchronous online learning (all together in the Collaborate room). Which do you think is more effective and why do you think that? Which do you like better, and why?

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 5
This week we have what we call "open mic." You can write a post about anything related to your teaching that you would like responses from your classmates.

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 4
Here is this week's question: "What was the event that most took me surprise this week - and event that shook me up, caught me off guard, gave me a jolt, or made me unexpectedly happy?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 3
Please write a post about the following question, "In thinking about my past week teaching what is one thing I would do differently, and why?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 2
Please write a post about the following question, " In thinking about my teaching activities this past week, of what do I feel most proud? Why?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 1
Describe something you used in your program in the first weeks of school that you learned in the summer NTI program. How did it work? Did it get you off to a stronger start than last year?

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Acknowledgement of Individuality

I made several inaccurate assumptions about my eighth grade students when I began teaching. My initial impression was that these students, in general, felt they were too cool for school. After a few weeks of teaching, I began to think they were just bored with the content and my method of teaching. I increased the difficulty of the material being presented, only to discover the lack of engagement was not a result of boredom. I am just now beginning to understand that level of maturity and intellectual development of students within an eighth grade class is vast. As I rotate through a new group of eighth grade students every nine week period, I observe increased student engagement when activities incorporate multiple opportunities for students to express their individuality. This observation has changed my perspective about creating lesson plans for eighth grade students. Allowing for creative methods of self-expression and providing consistent, respectful acknowledgement of each expression, has increased student participation.

1 comment:

Suzette said...

Thanks for this post! I understand your struggles with this transition group. Our school's entry level is at 9th grade. I have found that many of the students are STRUGGLING with organization. Our school has more periods than most in the county (7). I guess the assumption of most would be that the 9th graders are the students experiencing the greatest challenges. I have found that I am seeing an equal struggle and some times even more substantial with the 11th graders. The 11th graders are a bit different from the 9th graders because they have had the opportunity to experience a different high school environment. That environment often had fewer classes, no uniform requirements, not a s much rigor and a spirit of apathy. I have a couple of 11th graders that are simply brilliant but their struggle with organization has been one of difficult means. Much like you, I have instituted methods to improve student organization and overall success. I hear students say that my class is their favorite class although they may be struggling academically. Beyond a shadow of doubt, creativity and an environment that promotes self expression helps to shape the success of the student over the long run. That's my 2cents.

Thanks again!