Wednesday, March 16, 2005

On to Day Three

Which went better than day two and day one, especially with English 10. I am still having some trouble with it, though I had a more traditional and structured class with them. As usual, they had to start with a journal prompt, which was to predict what might happen later in the book with Boo Radley and the kids. I then revisited reader response and gave them examples from my own life (for example, my growing up in the south is significant when I read To Kill a Mockingbird, as is the fact that I have never lived in a small town). I then gave them time to do work--vocabulary, reading, etc., since all of that was due today. Then we did some pretty boring stuff--we went over things on the overhead. Blar. I'm struggling with balancing interesting activities with pertinent knowledge. I'm struggling with trying to get them involved in activities with giving them reasons to be involved. I hope I can have this weekend as well as spring break to revamp some of my plans and make things a bit more interesting!

The Journalism class went well though. It seems like this is going to be a good group. Most of the kids are really engaged. We watched a clip from Napoleon Dynamite and they wrote a review for it in their journals. We went over the overall idea of the newsmagazine and then we did a mock press conference. They asked some really great questions and were really involved. I get their first significant assignment tomorrow (the rewrite of the fairy tale in tabloid style), so I'll see what kind of written work they need to turn in.

I have a handful of work yet tonight, so this will be a brief posting. I feel like I don't have a whole lot of time to do much else now that I've started teaching. I'm assuming that it will get easier! I'm assuming that once you teach something several times over (one of the benefits of trimesters, I suppose), it begins to get easier. And once you teach one text, it's pretty easy to approach another. In some ways, I'm looking forward to teaching the plays because most of the reading will be done in class. They're not doing the reading at home, which will be frustrating, and I know they won't be able to do things like large group discussions and small group activities if they haven't read the book. Maybe after the journal tomorrow, I'll give them time to read in class. Or maybe journal, then go over vocab words, then come back to read, then overhead notes. I'm not sure. I'll see what Amy says. I want to come up with a fun activity for Friday too, but I really want them to do the reading!!

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