Here are some pictures from my new room! It is hard to get in one photo. I tried to set up some places for students to work alone, in small groups, and in larger groups. I also have a futon and interesting plastic chairs for reading and conversation. I am planning on mandating that the futon is for reading in my 3 classes since I am sure they will try to just "hang out" there.
After much consideration, I have decided to implement Moodle, but really only as a basic website. I am not utilizing any of its more advanced features this year. I am going to use www.collaborizeclassroom.com for student journaling. It is not too difficult to setup, and easy for students to respond to my prompts and to each other. After seeing that they have a quick, easy way to add accents I was sold on this as my program for the year. I don't want the students to have any excuses not to have those accents!
I am also excited about using www.threering.com to keep an online student portfolio. I can easily add non-digital student work, speaking assessments and videos to each student's portfolio. This is really important because in Colorado, as in many other states, we are beginning the implementation of new teacher evaluations and so much of it centers on being able to demonstrate student progress. Not to mention, I am really looking forward to be able to see and hear the progression of my students and be able to share it with students and parents.
Can't wait to get started. I am looking forward to being able to post some student reactions and comments along with my thoughts and ideas.
Happy Back to School!