Sunday, January 30, 2011

Asking Why

As I sit here trying to make lesson plans for another week (that I wanted to have completed before leaving school Friday) I think back to the work that I've been doing and keep asking myself "WHY?" I feel that many times the lessons that are done in a classroom, including my own forget that question. I now know that changing something that seems so insignificant can make a huge impact, so now this is my step two; remember the "why" of my lesson.
When I go into my classroom this week I know that sitting in front of me are 21st century learners. I know that what I am preparing them for might not even be developed yet. I do know however that if I can teach them to become learners that they will be successful in anything that they encounter. So do you suppose if I hand in my lesson plans with "Create learners by asking 'Why'" my principal will understand what I'm going to be doing all week?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Change of Language

Today I've experimented with using some different language. I have started calling my students readers and writers and learners. I have known that the language that I use with my students is so very important and today using these labels really worked for me. I have a student who is working with me to recover most of his 7th grade year. This is a student who has really struggled in all aspects of school including with me. Today was no exception. After having a really rough day together, I decided I needed to try something different. We discussed the learning that I had done the week before. I told this student that I learned that ALL students are genius. After a little more discussion the student grabbed a post it note and made this sign.

Not only did he just make the sign, but he showed me his genius the whole period! He worked so hard and I was so proud of him. At the end of the day he took off his sign and said, "I'll leave this here so I can save my genius for tomorrow". All from a difference in language!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Digital Literacy

I have sat down at my computer many times since I left the three day workshop by Angela Maiers to do some reflecting on the whole experience and I still can't seem to get it out of my head in an organized fashion. I know how amazing of an experience this was for me and all I want to do it shout about it and tell everyone. This experience reminds me of the times when I went away to be a camp councilor at a summer camp. I had the time of my life and then I came back to reality. I didn't know how to tell everyone about the experience I had, because they didn't get to experience it with me. I know that my friends soon started making fun of me for telling them all of my "camp stories", but it really was just that amazing!
In comparison, I feel that is part of my job to come back and tell everyone about my stories. It is my job to pass along what I've learned. It is so important for all of the other teachers around me to hear this message. But I'm left wondering, how can I put those three terrific days into one message and how am I going to get it across.
The message that I hope to spread is, "You are Genius and the world demands your contribution".
I am still not sure how I'm going to spread the word, but this is my start. I look forward to learning more through this journey and always remembering each child in my presents is genius and they need to be contributing to the world!