Ten Things I (verb) about….

This began the first five-day week of the term. I felt fairly prepared going into it because I worked a lot over the weekend. My first block contained a few behavior hiccups, but aside from that I think some of them made sense of the John Donne sermon. I was hoping for more creativity when it came time to reinvent his metaphor of losing a grain of sand being akin to loosing headland. I expected grand ideas like losing a piece of star-dust is like losing an entire galaxy. We have rushed a little through the poems, so I think we’ll need to do a bit of review today and maybe some more annotation to check for comprehension. It really is tough to walk the line between innovating with technology, and trying to be aware of how many students are actually getting a grip on the text.

My second block was to be an adventure through career choices, but my lack of understanding for the tech made it a little more difficult. The school has a class set of clickers for the SmartBoard. I made a quick survey of career choices and factors. I was hoping that the SmartBoard would compile how many students chose what answer, but after the survey, the fields were blank. I checked and rechecked, but couldn’t find the data. I’ll have to play with the system again, but if it doesn’t compile that data, I don’t know how useful these clickers really will be. Instead of an anonymous survey, I had to redo it the old-fashioned way with everyone raising their hands. Of course we had a great discussion about how we change our career path and motivation as we get older. I really enjoy some of the conversation with this group. We laugh, we joke, we poke fun at celebrities, and I hope that they are learning something about non-fiction.

I think one of the issues the students here have with this unit on Fame and Greatness is that we are very far removed from Hollywood in rural Alberta. Many of the students have just labeled those stars as vapid and pretentious, so they aren’t always willing to learn their stories or if they have any life lessons to offer. It should prove interesting this week as we move to profiles of people who aren’t just celebrities, and that have made an impact on society. I want to assume that my students will be more invested in people who have worked hard to achieve greatness, but I also remember that when you assume you make an…


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