Monday, March 5, 2012

On the fly...

Whew! What a Monday!  My students are definitely ready for a break...and that makes me ready for a break!!  Today we used the characterization chart to review character traits.  My students did a pretty good job of grasping the concept (again).  We really worked on thinking about the characters and how they change.  But first, we had to take our own notes.  Here are some samples of the students' work.

As you can see, each student had a different idea of what made the characters they chose tick.  I allow my students to use markers, crayons, colored pencils, etc. to take notes and work on their own copies of anchor charts.  I find that when students help create the work (anchor chart) and then make it their own (Reading Response Journal) they tend to remember it and take ownership of their learning.  Using colors helps solidify that learning.  In my class, we all know that "If we see it, say it, and do it, we have a better chance of remembering it!"  Of course, that doesn't always translate into great assessment grades, but it's better than just lecturing!

Today was definitely an "on the fly" day!! When I presented the anchor chart (see yesterday's post) one of my students asked, "I thought you told us that all the big characters were fast??"  I had NO IDEA what she was talking about!!!!  I asked her to clarify.  She said, "Remember?? You said that they were fast...they have Feelings, Actions, Sayings, and Thinking.  Remember??"  The truth is I didn't remember...until she reminded me!  First, I was a little embarrassed, then I realized that someone was listening all those months ago!!! Haha!  That's how I previously taught them to set up their foldable.  So, on the fly, we changed things around.  Another student told me (in a consoling tone), "It's ok, Mrs. M., you're old.  And you make mistakes."  Thanks...they remembered that saying from previous lessons, too!!!  Don't you love how they love us...old age, bad memories, and all??!!

Teaching is just the best!  I love having this blog and interacting with other bloggers!  It's nice to have someone to share unique ideas with and to get feedback from.  At work, I appreciate the support of admin when it comes to my uniqueness. I love my school because I get to be me!  The best teachers, like those in Blog Land, and so many on my campus, know that their students deserve their best.  Someone I trust today told me that our students deserve teachers who think outside the box...I prefer to say teachers who teach on the fly!! (To that person, know that your conversation with me was important and it made me rethink...and hope...and I am grateful that you listened.)

Let me end this post with another quote from the awesomeness of J.K. Rowling.  Hey, did you know I love Potter?  Haha!

“We're all human, aren't we? Every human life is worth the same, and worth saving.”--JK Rowling
Aren't we, in a way, saving our students' intellectual lives?  And aren't they ALL worth saving, no matter how low or how difficult?  Are you the teacher you would want your own children to have?