Monday, February 13, 2012

Day 1

Well today was the day, we flipped. I was incredibly nervous about how the kids would be when they came in the room, if they would remember their supplies and so on.

I was pleasantly surprised. A few kids forgot of course, but they used today for research. I divided my desks into pods of 4 and in addition to the desks to work at created a "research corner" where my reference books were, a "reading corner" with mythology books and chapter books and finally I created a "quiet corner" for students to go and sit and quietly work when the group was distracting them. I also allowed them to chose their own seats.

So the question is, how did Day 1 go? Well I like to start with the cons, I don't know why it makes me feel better about the positives I guess, so here goes:

Cons: Some students did forget materials and while that was ok today, tomorrow it may be a problem. A few students took advantage of the time negatively and used it as an excuse to walk around the room and get into trouble. A few students could not get started without a lot of input from me. I emphasize a "few" on all of these items, perhaps 2-3 out of 90 students.

Pros: I saw many many students working together and staying on task, helping each other out with the research. I saw one girl who rarely does anything in my class take advantage of the quiet corner and go and sit and do work...that was probably my most thrilling moment of the day. Finally I felt like I really got to walk around and get to know their learning styles a bit more, and really help them come up with ideas for their projects. I saw them getting enthusiastic, and asking questions, and actually CARING. I haven't seen this  in a long long time from my students.

Overall I was incredibly happy with today, I know its a honey moon phase and their are still kinks to be worked out, but for at least today I'm exhausted but incredibly happy with how things went.

On a side note, a colleague of mine introduced me to the concept of making QR codes for the kids, I'm playing around with it and there's definitely potential for some really cool things. Has anyone else used QR with their students, I'm interested to hear of others projects.

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