Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Time for some fun!

One of the problems I have encountered with my classes this semester is that I have not factored in enough fun. We have had two tough units in a row (Spanish Civil War and Detective Novels) and although the kids have learned so much I feel like it is time to loosen up and have some fun.

So, there will not be a new reader for our final unit of the semester! Yay! I am going to go back to short stories and really focus on meaningful but fun activities and assessments for our final unit this year...TECHNOLOGY!

For this unit, I am going to ask the students to create projects that would help their peers and future students learn concepts that we have covered this year. If someone asks me, I may even let them do how to succeed in the flipped classroom! I am a big believer in giving some free reign on the methods of the delivery of this project, but it must incorporate technology. I spoke to one of my peer teachers and she said she recently assigned a technology project where she said Power Points were forbidden. She had the kids choose a way to present from http://cooltoolsforschools.wikispaces.com/ . There are some cool ideas for projects there. The kids will also learn some technology vocabulary and I feel confident there will be lots of speaking! I am looking at not only discussion questions about technology, but revisiting the prompts from the Google Voice assignments this semester.

I am thinking about giving the final before the Unit Assessment for this unit so that I have time to grade an effective assessment. I am planning on having the kids do a writing prompt which incorporates their knowledge from the semester. We will also have a listening and speaking prompt. Then, we can watch the Unit Assessments during the end of the semester and the kids can focus on studying for their other classes. Our school mandates finals in just about every class, so the kids are really stressed those last two weeks!

I am preparing for my conference in Chicago this summer, and I am excited that I am going to work with a colleague to do a professional development day on the flipped classroom in my school district. I have also been approached by another school to deliver a half-day presentation on the flip! I am so excited to share my passion (and get to do some free traveling!)