Thursday, September 7, 2017

Kick Off!

We kicked off Genius Hour officially yesterday!  

I think the students are a mixture of scared and excited.  They are scared with the amount of freedom and unknown involved in this year-long undertaking.  They are also excited to be given time to explore the topics of their choosing!  Ahhh..... the beauty that is Genius Hour!

We spent some time watching 2 videos (1 & 2), and then brainstorming about topics of interest.

Next week the plan is to narrow those topics to 2 to present to Mrs. Looper or I in meetings on the 20th.

Fun times!

Happy learning,

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Ready to Hit the Ground Running

This week was all about getting us ready for next week's true Genius Hour kickoff!

The students assembled accountability folders which contain

  • a tracking sheet of each Wednesday from now until the Showcase on 5/9
  • a contract which they will sign with Mrs. Looper and myself stating what each of our roles are in this learning adventure
  • a sheet to track questions they have and answers they find
  • a sheet which will hold their driving question
I'm excited to see how this accountability piece helps the students this year.

Happy learning, 

Thursday, August 24, 2017

A commitment.....

So.... I've made a commitment to blog weekly!  Here we go..... thanks for going along!

This school year has been one of adjustments.....

  • Teaching writing all day (no more reading)
  • Tweeting every day using the #sharethepositive idea
  • Going back to school pursuing a Master's Degree
  • Taking on new church commitments
While there are bumps with each of these transitions, each one is a learning opportunity!

I appreciate you joining me on the learning & growing adventure!

Happy learning,

P.S. Genius Hour starts next week!  I'm sure that will give me PLENTY to write about!

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Finding the New....

Well, it's been WAY too long since I've posted.  I'm going to put that in the past and just move on!  

A teacher asked me the other day what do I do to keep the passion?  My simple answer... find new ways to do things.  Whether it's a new project, a new room setup, a new technology tool.... I have to keep mixing things up.  (This probably also explains why I struggle with eating the same thing twice in the same day!)

New things I'm doing this year.....

  • Only teaching writing - I will dearly miss talking about books, so I will find ways to work those into my writing classes.
  • New desk setup - I SERIOUSLY downsized my desk.  I'm excited to give students more space in the room.
  • New way of teaching grammar - We are going to use Jane Kiester's Giggles in the Middle to learn grammar techniques this year.
  • New technology tools - The one I'm trying first is Flipgrid.  This tool allows students to post video replies to questions I post.  Check this out!
Students - I'm excited to learn & grow with you.
Parents - Thank you for trusting your children to me each day.
Teachers - Keep finding new ways to keep your passion high.

Happy learning,