Monday January 11/15

I’ve changed up the schedule a bit so we can do the book talks at the end of the week rather than at the beginning. So today I’ve secured room 208 for you to work with your groups on your seminars. I think this would be a good opportunity to start applying what you learned on Friday about how to deliver an effective presentation.

Thursday January 7/16

Today’s goal is to write our final blog post. This time I am actually going to give you a topic. I’d like you to write about the connections between your novel and Othello.

Tomorrow we’re going to talk about what makes an effective presentation with slides.

What I’d like you to do to prepare for tomorrow is try to find an example of a video of a presentation with slides that you think is effective. It can be about anything.

A good place to start looking is TED.

Friday January 8/16

I’m home sick today. Here’s what you’re doing:

1) Think about an example of a really bad presentation you once saw (it might have been a student presentation, but it was probably a teacher power point!) What made it terrible. DON’T USE NAMES. Just focus on the details that made the power point (or Prezi) presentation ineffective. Jot these ideas down and then share with a partner. Then share with the rest of the class.

2) Think of an example of a good presentation (this was your homework!). What made it good? Jot these ideas down and then share with a partner. Share with the class.

3) Have  a look at the following presentation on good power point presentations:

4) From this presentation and your discussions make a list of the criteria you would expect from a good presentation with slides. Hand these lists in.

5) You can have the rest of the period for working on your seminars. Please remember that book talks begin next week. These were originally scheduled to start Monday, but I still need time to get your CCAs back to you and obviously that won’t happen today so instead we will work on seminars Monday and Tuesday and begin book talks on Wednesday.

Monday January 4/16

Welcome back!

I hope you all had a restful break. I know you needed it.

We’re going to ease back into things today by reviewing what’s left in the course and then giving you time to prepare for this week’s literature circle meeting.

Book talks for the CCA are next week so you will have your CCA’s returned by Monday.

Your Othello essays are all marked but you will have to log in to Turn it in to see your mark and feedback. If you’re not able to do that because you never created an account, come and see me at lunch and I’ll show you.

Thursday December 17/15

Blogging in room 208 today. Please have your blogs posted before the end of the period. Comments can be done any time before your next meeting (but don’t forget please!)

Here’s the link from yesterday for those of you who were interested.

Wednesday December 16/15

Learning Goals

We are learning to use oral communication skills and collaborative skills to share and build knowledge about a text.

Success Criteria
• I can demonstrate responsibility and accountability by completing my reading and preparing my notes and questions prior to our group meeting
• I can identify key ideas and questions that I want to pose to my group that help enhance my own understanding and the group’s understanding of a text
• I can listen effectively and respond to the ideas of others
• I can present my ideas clearly in an informal small group setting
• I can build on ideas from other group members by asking clarifying questions and making connections

1) Review your reflection sheets from last time, and  reflect on which one of the success criteria is your goal for this week. Think about what specific steps you’ve already taken or can take to ensure you will meet that goal.

2) Review steps for literature circle meeting:

  1. Get anything that bugs you off your chest
  2. Take turns sharing key ideas from readers journals
  3. Take turns sharing discussion questions.
  4. Thank group members for their contributions
  5. Try to summarize most important ideas

3) Today I’m going to give you sentence starters to help you build on ideas and respond to ideas using academic language. I want you to try to use some of these sentence starters in today’s discussion.

4) Remember, in order to participate in today’s meeting you must have your reader’s journal complete. If you don’t, please come and see me for an alternate assignment.

5) Once your meeting is done (if time permits) we’ll reconvene to discuss possible blog topics for tomorrow.

Friday December 11/15

Okay so let’s take a few minutes to talk about our literature circle meetings and reader’s journals. I have reflection sheets that I want you to complete right now in preparation for next week. Lit circle reflection

I am concerned that a number of you didn’t a) submit reader’s journals and b) complete your reading. This is troubling for a number of reasons:

1) You won’t get feedback from me before your next set of journals are due

2) You let your group down by failing to meet the expectations and making it difficult to have a meaningful conversation about your book.

Next week if you are not prepared for your meeting (ie/ you don’t have your reader’s journals done and/or you haven’t read your entire novel chunk) you will be sitting out of the meeting and you will not get any marks for the meeting. Instead, you will be given a list of study guide questions to complete while your group meets.

Please have your blog posts completed and posted prior to next week’s meeting but be aware that your second blog post must be completed in class

Thursday December 10/15

Today is a blogging day. The goal of your blog is to synthesize the learning you’ve done in your reader’s journals and your literature circle discussion.

For this week I’ll let you decide what topic you want to write about. Choose something that sparked a lot of discussion in your group. It could be something you all agreed on or something that there was a lot of disagreement about. It could be something that you still have a lot of questions about. Whatever you choose to write about, you should attempt to draw some conclusions. It’s okay to change your mind about these conclusions, but in essence you are completing the “and so” part of the phrase “It says, I think, and so…”

Once your blog post is done, you’ll comment on at least two other blog posts. Remember, a good comment extends the conversation: Compliment, Comment, Question

Today we learned that if you don’t do your preparation for your literature circle meeting, there are real-world consequences: you let down your group members. We’ll talk about how to deal with this tomorrow.

Wednesday December 9/15

We’re beginning our literature circle meetings today. It’s really important that we talk about what constitutes good oral communication skills since that’s one of your learning goals for this unit:

Learning Goal                                             Success Criteria

We are learning to use oral communication skills and collaborative skills to share and build knowledge about a text. ·          I can demonstrate responsibility and accountability by completing my reading and preparing my notes and questions prior to our group meeting

·         I can identify key ideas and questions that I want to pose to my group that help enhance my own understanding and the group’s understanding of a text

·         I can listen effectively and respond to the ideas of others

·         I can present my ideas clearly in an informal small group setting

·         I can build on ideas from other group members by asking clarifying questions and making connections

So let’s focus on what active listening looks like and then let’s talk about strategies for building on ideas and keeping the conversation going.

Then you can get into your meeting groups.

The process for a literature circle meeting is as follows:

1) Make sure you’ve got your questions and reader’s journal ready to go.

2) Get comfy, make sure you can see everyone’s face.

3) Start by clearing the air. Is there anything you need to get off your chest before you can dive into the discussion.

4) Take turns going around the circle and identifying some of the insights you noted in your journal.

5) Go around again if you have more to add.

6) Take turns asking your discussion questions.

7) As a group try to sum up the most interesting ideas your group discussed.

8) Thank your group members for being prepared and sharing their ideas.