This week we are working with the 4th graders at J.W. We are teaching them how to be kind and why it matter to be kind. Today we did an activity where they were building stars and writing how to help someone on it. They loved the activity and it went very smoothly! ( probably only because my friend and I put on kid president for the 50 kids who weren't making the stars).
Today was my last day at memorial middle school. It was an interesting experience. I like being with them, and seeing how just doing one subject is. There were challenges, and things that I didn't like. But overall, it was a good experience and I learned a lot about teaching styles.
Today I challenged my class to do the hand it forward challenge. I only told them to write one letter but a lot of the kids wrote 2-3. I was so amazed. Obviously, there were kids who didn't do anything or take it seriously, but I think it went well. Although, I would only stick to asking older grades to do it because they are more mature and serious, and they would be able to handle the assignment better.
I know I've already posted about the hand it forward challenge, but I'm excited that my middle school teacher is actually joining the challenge as well!
He has given me permission to run class tomorrow and Friday to do this challenge. Of course, I won't be doing much but I will be introducing the idea. And I'm really excited to have my middle schoolers do this!
I read this article today that was about sketch notes. Sketch Notes are when students are given the opportunity to draw what they have learned instead of writing it down because for visual learners, it's better. This gave inspiration for future reading assignments. Since I will be a history teacher, there will be reading. So instead of having them just take notes after, I believe that they should have a choice. So I decided that I would give them the option to either draw what they have learned, fill in a sheet that goes along with the reading, or taking notes. I think it's a great idea to give students voice and choice in their learning.
The link to the article I read is: http://whoswhoandnew.blogspot.com/2014/03/why-doodle.html
Today we had someone skype call our class. His name is Coyte Cooper. He was telling us about the #handitforward campaign. The campaign is about graditutde and being nice and appreciative of those who are in our lives. I was very inspired listening to him talking about. What you do is you write 5 letters ( one a day ) to people in your life that you appreciate. I can't wait to start this and I will start it immediately. I already have more than 5! I encourage everyone to try this! It's so beautiful to see your loved ones reaction when they get the letter.
Today I got the experience to be in an actual Social Studies classroom for the first time since I started my middle school observations. It was so nice to be in a classroom that has stuff around the room that actually has to do with the subject you're teaching. Even for me, it was more comfortable being in this kind of a classroom other than being in a completely different decorated room of a different subject.
Basically, the things in your classroom do matter!
Today we had to do an assignment that had to do with classroom rules and what rules are appropriate. I decided that these are the rules that I would like to have in my future classroom. I feel these rules are really good for the classroom. There aren't too many rules, there are no negative words such as don't or can't, and they are reasonable for a high school classroom.
Today was the first time I got to really interact with my students at the middle school. The teacher I'm observing allowed me to go over all of the answers for a sheet they were working on in class. When I was given the opportunity, I was also able to use a random name calling app for classes. Although I don't remember the name of the app, it ran smoothly, and I thought it was awesome. It let me know when everyone had been called, and each time it started over, it was in different order. It never was slow or had glitches.
For an assignment that we're doing we had to find apps that would create equality when calling on students in the class. You can put your class into this app, with their pictures, and the app will randomly choose a student. After the student has been picked, a check mark will appear in their picture showing that they have already been called on. This app is fair because you'll know when you've already called on a student that class so you won't call on them again, giving everyone in the room a chance to give an answer.