Friday, January 30, 2009
Of course, most of this is directed at 5th, but I have a few in 4th, 8th and 9th too. (ummmm...2nd might be the only ones exempt. Wow!)
For a class that I consistently say is one of my favorites to teach in years, some of you can sure drive me nuts!! But, try to look at it from my point of view, a term we went over this week.
Put yourself in my seat up front. Go ahead. Look at yourselves through my eyes. Do it.
What do you think you look like to me?
One is bouncing, bouncing, bouncing on the ball.
Others are falling off.
Another tells a joke and the rest crack up.
Then there's the directions given and two say, "I can't do it."
The rest of the class can and they can't....or won't try?
(Surprisingly, when they start to miss lunch, they can.)
Then there are the fits.
Or, there's the lack of trying.
There are some who won't finish.
Some who get involved any time any say anything.
And, this happens every day right now. Ugh!!!!
You tell me. From my point of view, is it being a baby about learning or is it just being idiotic? Or, should I just say you're immature...but you've been told that and told that, and somehow you think that makes it not your fault.
But, your behavior is your fault. It's who you are.
So, laugh and think it's funny, but someday you'll realize how ridiculous you were and you'll be embarrassed. Someday you won't want to look idiotic or babyish or like you're nuts on drugs (because you're not).
But, do you really want to now? Really? That's what I'm trying to get across to some of you. You are what you look like. And right now? You're not looking too good.
See you on Monday.
And, when they talk about where and when it took place, you'll be able to put it in one spot--all that blood and mud and war and death and trenches and no man's land.
Next time we do this you will truly be reviewing a chapter from math or history that you have already studied. We will follow the same procedure:
List facts about the topic, maybe using my key words on the back to help you to focus.
Group those facts into topics to organize them.
Label what you've taken from this unit.
Then, using the above information, write about it, using "The important thing about...."
The idea is to cement what you've got in your brain, but have some actual content to your 'cement', some actual gravel to it to make your memory strong, like real cement is.
The only part of "The important thing about ..." that shouldn't be factual should be the simile part: that should be unique and come from your head, a visual to help the cement hold. (It's like and It isn't)
Learning to do this isn't about 8th grade or English. It's about becoming a better student. Being a student doens't have to be difficult; it takes concentration, thought, and effort, but many times with the first two? The last, effort, isn't all that difficult.
And that? If I can teach? Wow! Success!!
Finally, from now if you don't hand in your pink sheets with your poem, I will not give above an 80. The pink sheets have my comments. They have the teaching you should be working on. Hand them in!!
Thursday, January 29, 2009
Monday, January 26, 2009
Look at Adonica's. She, too, followed my format and she added in specifics. It's terrific and it's what we're going to be working for: the more specific content the better.
All in all, a great Monday. More on this on Friday.
Friday, January 23, 2009
Zach's line of "Sooner, then later, I'm finished" caught my eye. I love Elizabeths' first stanza, and Joey takes hockey and makes me feel why he likes it so much.
Also from 5th we have Chris, using a book he has read, and Jenna paints the cold winter. Wow!
Larry took a quote from the Call of the Wild book and used that. Neat!
Sergey and Shawna are from 8th. What a picture Sergey paints of the crash, and look at how Shawna divides the lines: between midnight and sky. Wonderful!
Loren's on the owl and Bethany's two are from 9th. History and a room cleaning-- what a range of topics!
Allison, Sam, and Steven from 9th are next. Nature and state tests make for great topics.
Dana, Billie and Adonica finish out 9th. Billie writes of school and using the phone, while Dana and Adonica both use personification to write of nature. Wow, how wonderful!
I finish the post with Justin's work on bears and Brenna's work on paper. I loved how she compares two types of paper and how one restricts her and the other doesn't. I love it!
Remember: use my comments to improve. If you do, I can stay high with the grade. If you don't, I will drop it dramatically. The whole idea is to improve one step at a time.
I was showing 8th what 4th, 5th and 9th were doing with the computers so that if they wanted to start doing their poetry that way, they could too.
In no time, we picked a picture from the Bassette share folder, copied it onto a word document, wrote our two sentences, divided them to lines, edited out needless words, added in more images and terms, and then worked the page to have a poster.
They even looked for the most important line and pulled the best from it for their title.
Billie in 9th asked if she could get her memory flash so she could work on it at home. Wow! Then, Philip said, "This is so much better than just writing two sentences on a paper, and I've worked on it for a while!" He has a study hall so he can do this every week. How great it is to hear this kind of talk!
Yes. Learning can be fun. (poem due Wednesday)
Thursday, January 22, 2009
I graded the multiple choice part today and I want to share some of the great parts of it.
First, students who did the same as their top grade in the reading comprehension unit before the test or who even improved on their top grade. Wow!!!!
28, I said 28, people did as well as they have been or even did better. Wow!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Now, the grading for this unit was best and last. Here are all the people who ended up with an average of 85 or above for the eight reading comps that we did. (By the way, we're not finished with reading comps. We'll be doing them like we were with sp/vocab. The test is the test, but it's not my focus or my year.)
Dana Sam Allison Kaylean Kylene Philip Steven Bethany Mitchell Sam Adonica
Jake Cheyenne Sheldon Sergey Sam Nick
Kayla Greg Larry John Jarika Chris
Chris Nate Alan Jeff Emilie Daphne Damian Sara Steffanie Chris Hannah Joel Justin
37 people scored an 85 or above on their 8 reading comps with a criteria of best and last.
Now, everyone realizes that this is only one part of a three part test? We'll be grading the two other parts in a week or so and by the state's guidelines.
Then, the state will take all the results and do their usual voodoo with them, weighing some questions as being worth more and some as less....who knows what the state does!
All I know is that, for the most part, you guys worked hard, stayed focused (well, for middle schoolers!) and you have done your best. That's all I can ask for.
I'm proud of you. Thank you for learning and trying.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
But, some of you underlined, circled and outlined. Wowowowowowowowowowowow!