Sometimes listening to my students talk in their book club meetings makes me want to cry big fat sentimental tears of joy.
When my ENG4C class begins its book club meetings, they discussions are shallow and clunky and stilted. I have to intervene to keep the discussion flowing.
We’re in our second last meeting and my group of boys reading Crank are so invested in the story they talk about it at lunch and text each other about it after school. Boys who used to groan about reading are raiding the library for more books by Ellen Hopkins.
My other guys who are reading Looking for Alaska are discussing how angry and sad they were at a certain point (except for one who’s claiming it didn’t affect him) the others are all begrudgingly admitting that they cried.
I don’t need to do anything now during these meetings. I’m just watching them and listening to them.
It’s kind of beautiful.
Here are the books my kids love:
Looking for Alaska
It’s Kind of a Funny Story
The Perks of Being a Wallflower
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
Let me start off by saying I am quite happy where I am in my career at the moment. I love my school, my students, and my co-workers. I am not looking to jump ship any time soon.
Lately I’ve been struggling with figuring out what my next step is. Where do I go next? I feel very frustrated that, at least in my board, it seems there are very few leadership opportunities beyond administration (My reasons for not wanting to be a principal are fodder for another post). I mentioned this at a leadership track workshop earlier this year and was shot down by well-meaning workshop leaders who told me there were plenty of opportunities! I could be a department head, or chair a subject council, or work on a team or task force, or become a learning coordinator.
The thing is, I’ve been a learning coordinator. I’ve been on a task force. I’ve chaired a subject council, and I’ve been a department head (acting, but still a department head). I’ve even been lucky enough to teach a course at a faculty of education. I didn’t mention all that at the workshop because even as I write it, it sounds kind of obnoxious.
I’d be interested in being a learning coordinator again if something popped up for which I was qualified, but those positions have been reduced.
At the risk of continuing to sound obnoxious, I feel like I have a lot to offer–or will have a lot to offer in the next few years–in terms of ideas about assessment and evaluation, curriculum, instructional technology, and differentiated instruction, but I don’t know what to do with it. I can’t become a learning supervisor or SO without being a principal first, and I can’t apply for jobs outside of my board without losing all my seniority.
I’m feeling a bit antsy and I feel like I need a good career coach.
If you have any suggestions, I’m all ears.
And so we come to our final class. It’s been a pleasure working with and learning from all of you. Here are the slides from Wednesday and please remember the cut off date for my assessment of your blog is March 25, but that doesn’t mean you should stop blogging. I look forward to reading about how how your next placements go!
During this week’s class we welcome Nick, Jacob, and Paolo from my first semester grade 10 English course. They’ll share what it’s like from the perspective of a student in a classroom when we implement a multiliteracies pedagogy.
After our chat, you’ll have time to present your poetry slams and discuss the reading for this week. Here are the slides:
What a great class this week! We looked at remixes and poetry slams and we shared teaching strategies and resources.
I’m really looking forward to our Althouse Poetry Slam next week. Feel free to bring snacks to share to help recreate that coffee house vibe.
Here are the slides from yesterday’s class. If you were absent yesterday, please ensure you’ve watched the videos for today (posted in the syllabus), and I’d like you to blog about either poetry slams or remixes and how you could use them in the classroom.
I’m pretty excited about this week’s class! We’re going to spend some time discussing Royan Lee’s pecha kucha. Royan’s blog is called Spicy Learning and most recently he’s blogged about… well… blogging. You might want to check out his post and comment. He said he’s open to any questions about his class’s pecha kucha (it’s a few years old now and his thoughts have changed a bit) and you can feel free to comment on his blog or ask him a question on Twitter. He’s @royanlee on Twitter so he’s pretty easy to find.
Pecha kuchas are really interesting in terms of the presentation format. You can read more about them here.
After that we’re going to head to the lab to explore a variety of web 2.0 tools that students are using in class. After you’ve explored a variety of resources, I’d like you to reflect on them in a blog post. You might also consider using one of these tools in your lesson redesign which should be posted on your blog by next week.
I have your survey redesigns marked and some feedback for you on your blogs so far and I’ll get those to you as soon as I figure out how to do that in OWL.
Hello multiliteracies folks!
This week I talked to you about Bitstrips and told you that I had created accounts for all of you. If you want to experiment before next week’s class, here’s what you have to do:
Go to: http://www.bitstripsforschools.com/
Choose the student option and type in 5452S for the code.
Then find your name on the list.
Hello everyone! By now your redesigned literacy surveys should be posted. If you haven’t done this yet because you were encountering difficulties, please come speak to me.
I’ve updated the list of blogs (See box to the right of this post). Please remember the expectation is that you blog regularly throughout this course (at least 5 posts) and comment regularly throughout this course (at least 5 times). Two of your posts have been assigned (the survey redesign and the lesson redesign). The other posts are up to you. I shared some exemplars from last year during last week’s class.
Your readings for this week are as follows:
In this week’s class we’ll do our jigsaw activity from last week and we’ll also talk about comics in the classroom. Then we’ll discuss your lesson redesign assignment.
Hello everyone! After today’s class, we’re a third of the way done, already! If you look to your right you’ll see I’ve posted all the blog urls I have so far. This is an easy way for you to find them. You can either visit this blog regularly to find the urls, or I will also show you how to subscribe to it in google reader.
By the end of class today, your survey redesign should be posted on your blog, either by way of embedding or by providing a link to the survey. If you still need help with that, don’t worry! We’ll have time today.
The slides for today can be found below:
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