Signs Of Progress

In a stack of papers called Instruction.

  • Jan
  • 12
  • 2007

These past 2 weeks, I’ve seen some good things happening in my seventh period. I’m trying to keep track of them so I know that it’s not all bad. The frustrations of seventh period stay with me all day.

  • A student looked at other students when reading her response instead of looking at me — she understood who her audience was.
  • One day, two students offered examples to prove their points without me prompting them to do so.
  • The groups of 4, the number of students allowed in a group to work on the final, have banded together and have used class time more effectively than any other period. This is really to say that this period is at least making some effort to use their time where my other periods are making none, but still…
  • Imagine a room of students sitting at computers. After I suggested a few ways to gather ideas, they were looking through Wikipedia pages (I know the entries on the texts we’re working with are good), Google images (for pictures of Tiresias and such), and search results for terms like “metamorphosis presentation” or “sisyphus project.” They know what they’re doing.
  • Several groups understand that they need a prompt before they decide on a product for their final, which means that they need to know what question they are answering before deciding how they plan to present their conclusions to the class.
  • As I walk around the room, I see more students actually grappling with the final project than any other period. Scanning their notes, looking at other resources, questioning each other (“But what’s the point of that?”), these all indicate that they understand the task. Now, let’s see what they deliver.

I think they are becoming more independent, but we’ve got a long way to go. Perceptions, realizations, comments, insights, connections, reflections, all of these need to be more sophisticated. I need to work with them on ways to structure their ideas, patterns to imitate and such. Though they have good ideas, students in seventh mumble more often than promulgate. Confidence certainly lacks, but intelligence doesn’t necessarily. Seventh keeps it really quiet.

Comments are closed.