Fall is here!

Read-Alouds:

Punctuation Celebration by Elsa Knight Bruna (ISBN-13: 9780805079739):

Brittany chose a grammar centered novel for her read aloud which could appeal to kids while also planting the seed of proper grammar usage in their minds to be developed over their academic career.   The one things that keeps the book interesting is the illustrations I feel that without great pictures it would be hard to keep a youngsters attention with something as interesting as grammar.  In my class I would assign each student a punctuation, they would have to write a short paragraph using this punctuation as well as draw their own illustration of how they interpret  the punctuation.  The next class period they would explain it to the class.  Also, you could have the students write a paragraph and then trade it with a partner who would check the writing for missing or incorrect punctuations which would help hone their proofreading skills.

Learning Experiences:

This week in class we took the advice of Stephanie and got to know one of our classmates better.  I enjoyed this activity because it was a good experience to learn about someone new in a different way besides just their academic capabilities.  Also, we began to discuss analytical vs. global learners and the different teaching styles or qualities that help each of these learners.  I am an analytical learner.  Having all of my notes perfect, my agenda filled out to a tee, and an update calendar are not just habits for me, but necessities.  I believe that teachers styles are profoundly affected by what type of learner they are and it is now becoming easier for me to recognize the different types and styles in my own teachers.

The teacher of year year Mrs. Kelly Nalley came to visit the class on Thursday.  It was interesting to hear from an accomplished teachers and how much pride she takes in her career.  I hope to one day possess this great quality.  Mrs. Nally gave a very good presentation in which she used a book to walk us through her journey to winning SC Teacher of the Year which was an interesting presentation style which I plan to put to use in the spring.  She was very honest and down to earth which are qualities I respect in a teacher.  Overall I think that Thursday was a great chance for the TC’s to get great insight into the career some of us are pursuing.

Current Events

The Colorado State legislature is scrambling to find funding for the states higher education institutions.  Universities such as University of Colorado, Boulder are keeping the option of raising tuition open.  This would go against  a policy the institution has in place which promises that you will play the same rate of tuition all four years.  Among a multitude of other repercussions the University will be dealing with a tidal wave of financial confusion with its current students. Tuition could increase 50% in the next four years making the tuition for in-state students ridiculous.

http://www.9news.com/news/article.aspx?storyid=156239&catid=339

Colorado is not the only state having this problem.  Recently the public universities in South Carolina were attempting to raise the tuition substantially.  The State legislature put a stop to this by taking back the categorical grant it was going to give the schools for new construction and assigning it to them for the sole purpose of maintaining the current tuition rate.  I honestly feel that the state legislature should go one step further and have schools break down the tuition and give a lengthy explanation of why they need to raise tuition other than just wanting more money to allocate to areas that are already functioning sufficiently.  In my opinion universities are losing sight of the student which is not acceptable.

Quote of the Week

A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.  ~Henry Brooks Adams

I feel that Mr. Brooks quotes embodies a great effect of teaching.  Knowing that you are affecting something greater than yourself that can only spread in positive ways is, in my opinion, on of the best reasons to teach.

Observations

This week I began to see that senior year is not all fun and games.  In observing all of my friends and talking to them about class I have decided that senior year is the hardest year so far.  For those of who thought It was going to be a breeze are sadly mistaken.  Everyone of my friends has at least 2 hours of homework every night on top of a job.  I think that this is a good thing for two reasons.

1) It keeps us focused and out of trouble.  Seniors that have work due in important classes know they must prioritize this in their schedules.  With no free time my class has no time to fool around.  This might change in the second semester but I have a feeling this is going to be a theme of the entire year.

2) This year is preparing us for college.  I feel that managing six classes at one time with a job is going to make the freshman year much less intimidating for the sole reason that our senior year has taught us time management and how to do it successfully.

Reflections:

This week has been the hardest week so far.  Procrastinating on the language project was not a good idea and last week was a great reminder of the wonders of caffeine but the drawback of waiting to do a major project.  I believe I will do well this year but it is going to take strong commitment and a great attitude in order to do great, which is what I strive to be.  Out of all of my classes I am enjoying language the most currently.  Many of my classmates hate our current book The Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad but I am enjoying reading it.  It is similar to The Poisonwood Bible in many way but I enjoy Conrad’s writing much better than Kingsolvers. Fall is finally here and it seems like the year is flying by, I am trying to savor every minute of it because I know one day I will look back and hopefully I can say I took advantage of every opportunity my senior year.

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