Passive acceptance of the teacher's wisdom is easy to most boys and girls. It involves no effort of independent thought, and seems rational because the teacher knows more than his pupils; it is moreover the way to win the favour of the teacher unless he is a very exceptional man. Yet the habit of passive acceptance is a disastrous one in later life. It causes man to seek and to accept a leader, and to accept as a leader whoever is established in that position. - Bertrand Russell

Monday, October 24, 2005

where have i been and where am i going?

i've been trying to make it through work and figure out if this is something i can continue doing. i mean, i'm glad i stuck it out a second year because i can see a huuuuuge difference in myself as a teacher. there are days when i totally hit my stride and i feel like i'm making a difference. there are other days that i want to throw my hands up and walk out because i'm taking on a seemingly impossible task.

the past 2 weeks were spent doing a project on the library research process. it was cool, the kids were into it, and i think they may have learned something. i know that i learned something. i learned that projects are good. projects in which the kids have control over a significant part of it are even better. so of course my wheels have been turning in my brain.

today i'm at home. i needed to take a personal day. october spells burnout for me. but i'm not completely shunning work today. here i am, writing about it. i have to flesh out this idea that i've had going in my brain that i want to attack after the winter break.

students are going to identify something they would like to see change in their school, in their town, in their state....you see where i'm going i hope? it can be a little thing or a big one. they'll go about changing it.

i'm working in the persuasive essay, research, supporting details and main idea.
there will be letter writing, interviews when feasible, and depending on the things they choose we could work some guest speakers in.

i would like the kids to be working in groups of some kind. i haven't figured out whether that would be one whole class as a group or groups of 3 or 4.

my goal in this project is to teach them the curriculum in a way that doesn't seem totally divorced from real life. the kids i'm working with need skills that they can carry into the real world. after a good talk with my principal and a better one with my department chair i feel confident in taking this on.

i had thought this summer that i could do a zine project with my kids and i'm thinking that i could tie that in and we would attack the whole publishing process that way.

i'm really excited. i just need to figure out where to begin.

13 Comments:

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Blogger globalfriendshipnetwork said...

school project and collective work of students with teachers always lead to new things . kids and teachers both are more creative these days . you are doing good work for kids and society .

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Blogger "Ms. Cornelius" said...

Darling, where ARE you? I am hoping youn are taking a breath and getting to a zen place, but your long silence has me worried....

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