All posts tagged: reflection

English Notebook

Do you use Interactive Notebooks in your class?  I first heard of this teaching tool about ten years ago when I had the opportunity to attend an Avid two-day training.  The teacher who taught the class was an AP science teacher.  While teaching us the ins and outs of the notebook, he also brought in notebooks from students in his science classes as well as examples in history class.  As I went home that afternoon, I thought about how I could use this tool in an English classroom.  The student notebook examples I saw were filled with detailed Cornell notes, worksheets, and Avid’s famous LSAs (left-side activities).  Even looking online for examples, I found ELA at the middle and high school level much to be desired. That fall, I decided to just launch the notebook and try to use it how I normally teach class.  And I have to say, I wish I had tried this sooner.  Everything that I thought could/would go wrong, never did, and I had so much more buy-in and participation than traditional …

5 End-of-the-Year Ideas

We have a week left of school and every year I feel hard-pressed for time.  There’s so much to do and so little time in which to do it!  As the school year comes to a close, I give students time to reflect on the past year and look forward to the coming one. Reflecting is a good way to showcase the hard work students did this year, and for them to see where they started in September and ended in June.  Because growth in reading and writing is slow, oftentimes students don’t see it.  As teachers we see our students grow in leaps and bounds, but when you’re in the thick of it, it doesn’t always feel that way.  Regardless of whatever final essay, project, or assignment they are completing as the year winds down, I remind students of this and encourage them to push themselves a little harder as we approach the finish line.