During the first week of spring, I show my students photographs of this amazing phenomenon to inspire them to grow despite the rocky road they may have travelled on during the first part of the school year. I let them know that nothing is impossible when there is a will, and if they demonstrate a will, then I will help them to find a way!
We all experience this predicament: our students run through the yards of the System 44 "football" field, navigating difficult tackles, throwing great passes, and scoring points that move them into the next Series. Then, in the fourth quarter, with a few minutes remaining, they request their unused time-outs as they labor through Series 24 and 25. There seems to be an impasse, a standstill, and an almost stop right before the end -zone. How can we get our students to complete the touchdown and then receive their well-earned Certificate of Completion?
Nicholas is a seventh-grade student in my mixed model System 44/Read 180 class. Nicholas started the System 44 program in the fifth grade and finally completed it mid-year in the seventh grade. Although a celebration was well-warranted, some teachers may be wondering why it took three years for him to finish the program.
In a former blog post "Research Unexpected (Part One)," I described how student choice and the Genius Hour became an unexpected reality in one of my READ 180 classrooms. I left readers hanging with my students stuck in step 3 of the 6 step research process, which is the "gathering information" stage. Here is what transpired since that step and what it took to get my students to Step 6.
Parents desire to listen to teachers about their children's progress in school. Regrettably, their lives are often full and busy that they cannot always comprehend what is being conveyed to them via emails, printed reports, attached Word documents, and school webpages.
We've all heard of "student choice," "Project Based Learning," and perhaps the "Google Genius Hour." These ideas allow students to explore a topic of their own interest, create or build something new from their research findings, and then present it to an audience in a format of their choosing.
System 44 Educator | MANHASSET, NY