Read Alouds: Since the week was cut short with a much need break, the class only had the opportunity to read two books. First was Mrs. Spitzer’s Garden by Edith Pattou (ISBN: 0152058028). The book was a great extended metaphor for individuality. Each plant represented a child. No two plants could be the same and as they progressed through the year each student became special in their own way. The book had great art in it which really helped the story come alive in a way words alone could not do. This book could be used to start a unit on photosynthesis or the earth. Also, it could be used in a writing assignment in which each student could describe themselves as a different plant and then draw a picture of what they think they would look like. I would use this book in the first and second grade. Next was Only One You by Linda Kranz (ISBN: 0873589017) which talked of not becoming just another fish in the sea(literally). This book also embraced the theme of individuality, I would use this book in a biology lesson to begin talking about fish/the ocean, it would help convey the idea that the ocean is a very diverse place which contains many organisms that are different but still interconnected. An art lesson could also be developed where the students could draw/paint their own fish.
This week in class we finalized our Self Esteem Projects. My group had decided to do a skit which was very appropriate for our personalities. Initially, the group was very scattered, just bouncing ideas of off one another. Ironically, we changed the skit a class period before so all of the prior planning was for nought. Overall, I throughly enjoyed working with my group, it was a great time to get to know everyone’s personalities and their strengths. Now that we’ve wrapped the Self Esteem lesson up I feel I have walked away from the unit with knowledge that I can reference for the rest of my life regardless of if I decide to become a teacher.
The current event this week was selected by Mrs. Jackson. The article addressed the issue of study habits and their effect on students. New studies suggest that alternating study environments rather than staying in one place can help increase cognitive retention. Also, student in spaced out segments is more effective than cramming at the last second. I would support these new claims. I also get home from work after a long day of full classes and I am ready to go to sleep. This is an impractical option because I have a good 3 hours or more of homework waiting on me. I always complete this homework at my desk with dim light as I fight sleep. I have a strong feeling that If I began to mix it up my retention would increase. Also, spacing out my study session would be a good option. Often the A and B days are a dangerous temptation to take a day break and do the homework the night before. This year my goal is to stay a day ahead in all of my classes which is working out splendidly so far. I believe that if America’s students are to succeed in the modern age that they must embrace new methods of learning and incorporate them with old school ways. This progress into the digital age is a necessity to the livelihood of American education.
Quote of the Week:
“Education’s purpose is to replace an empty mind with an open one.”
— Malcolm Forbes –
I believe the quote addresses the issue that teaching students to have an open mind is just as important as the curriculum. In education a closed mind is an enemy to the teacher and the students. Part of becoming a great teacher and student is having the ability to reconcile with differences and present/receive the material in an objective way. This is a great skill that can only benefit those who embrace it.
Outside of the teacher cadet classroom this week I observed a great amount of cooperation between teachers,students, and staff. The school(from my perspective) is on the right track to building an even better program than it currently has. In calculus this week we had a Miss Pickle sub. She was very overbearing and made it hard for the class to work collectively on our study day before the test! Without any disputes or arguments the class knew to come together and get through the situation while allowing Miss Pickle to still believe she complete control over the room. It was amazing to see that my fellow classmates comprehended the situation and adapted to succeed. Teacher and student interaction has also become more obvious which is great for the freshman. In comparison to my freshman year teachers seem much more genuinely involved in the students academic success which is very reassuring to see. Overall Dutch Fork is becoming a community of learning.
The pieces of the puzzle are finally coming together. I may possibly be the most indecisive prospective student ever. I have received over 50 college letters, surfed hours over the internet at ivys, out of state schools, and dream schools. I never thought to investigate the schools that were right in my back yard. Before I began my blog today I finished my college application to Clemson. I returned from Tiger Town this afternoon and I love it there. The atmosphere, people, and academics are great. I think for the longest time I was scared of committing to a school but Clemson is looking like the place for me. Now I am beginning to feel the anticipation of waiting and the pit in my stomach of the though of rejection. It seems as if all of my friends are applying to Clemson each one with an amazing resume. Some of my friends have even received provisional acceptance. I know that I should worry about academics in high school right now and wait to look ahead until I receive a letter in the mail but the anticipation is always there. I ask myself questions like “what if i dont get in and all of my other friends do?” ” where will I go if I get rejected”. I have faith in my academics and in my resume but in addition to my reputation for being indecisive I have also received the tag of impatientience. Overall, I am at a great place in my life right now and I know that whatever path I go down at the end of my senior year it will be the one I am meant to be on.