Task Summary: This is the last quarter of senior year in high school, and it’s time to reflect upon all the memories as students transition into the next phase of life… Students will be writing a book called a Senior Memoir. It will consist of student’s memories and thoughts from their entire life.
– It’s highly recommended that students read This I Believe Essays in conjunction with this assignment. There are selected essays that are included in this project zip file.
We broached this problem once again during the 4th Quarter when I gave students a Roots Letter Writing Activity in letter format. As one of the assignment requirements, I stipulated that they must sign their name at the end of the letter. I found it puzzling that a good portion of the 7th Graders weren’t taught to write in cursive, or they had forgotten how. To their credit, they picked up on it in a matter of less than 30 minutes. Did I mention these kids are resoundingly awesome? I’ve read multiple articles on various news outlets saying there isn’t a need to emphasize cursive writing anymore. I’ve also had discussions with other educators about the matter. Personally, I see both points of view. I think we are in an information age where emphasis doesn’t necessarily need to be placed solely on penmanship. That being said, we are also in an age where everybody doesn’t have access to a computer inside the classroom or at home, so penmanship is still pretty important – print and cursive. The overall point of communicating your intelligence in as many formats as possible should always be valued whether it be on a computer, in print, in cursive, in pen, in pencil, or crayon;]
With the world now at our fingertips, how much technology is too much? Our Language Arts/Writing class will be exploring that question via Common Core speaking/listening standards, (7.SL.1) & (7.SL.5), with this viral video about how we forget how to unplug from time to time. I will begin the class with a bell work prompt, how many minutes and/or hours a day do you spend on your phone or other electronic gadgets? We will continue by viewing the viral video, I Forgot My Phone [here]. Students will then proceed to have initial discussion led by teacher guided questions. Once the discussion is complete, students will then move to a handout [here]. The handout is a newspaper article via the Washington Post: President Obama snaps a selfie at Mandela’s memorial service. The overall goal isn’t to be judgmental, but it’s to get students to understand a need, including myself, to unplug and reconnect to reality from time to time. Hopefully, this video along with other activities will spark a dialogue about whether they should unplug or not… Continue reading →
In the spirit of the holiday season being upon us, I decided to do a view and respond about Black Friday. In case you’re unaware of what Black Friday exactly is, please read the following snippet: “Black Friday is the Friday following Thanksgiving Day in the United States, often regarded as the beginning of the Christmas shopping season.” We began the class with a bell work prompt, “What do you know about Black Friday? Will you participate this year? Why or why not?” Most students knew what I was referring to, and they gave very candid responses. Most said they wouldn’t because they don’t see the point, or that perhaps their parents would but weren’t sure. The goal behind this particular bell work prompt, as it is for every bell work prompt, was to get them talking and involved in the classroom objective for the day. The objective, to engage, effectively, in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) on topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own point(s) of views clearly.
Our class books came from DonorsChoose.org today! A few weeks ago, I put together a project to receive two classroom sets of books, The Pearl & The Giver. I’m so thankful to the people that donated as well as helped to get these for my class! Those 9 donors will be hearing from us soon;)
When handing out permission slips, kids/students will insist they’re grown – they’re not grown… It’s always a good rule of thumb to keep parents, grandparents, and guardians in the loop. I do this for two reasons. The first being, I am NOT any student’s parent. It says PG for a reason. Second, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Again, keep in mind, kids will insist they’re grown. I repeat, they’re not. Most kids these days watch inappropriate movies with or without their parent’s permission. I know I did when I was a kid. I certainly watched my fair share when I was ages 12 to 18. However, it was always on my own time. Some kids tell me that other teachers and/or adults have let them watch certain movies in the past in other schools. My reply is simple, hope you enjoyed that while you could because that’s not how I run my classroom.