I routinely ask students to work together in diverse teams. Tom Wujec says, "When people work together, under the right circumstances, group models are much better than individual models." Wujec points out that "it's the conversations that are the important aspects [of groups]--not just the models themselves." Letting students collaborate under the right circumstances has produced some eloquent solutions to complex problems and some truly moving conversations this year in PC1.
While helping someone today, I realized something: "Be present in your poem." This was the advice I gave to a friend. You can stand up and say every word perfectly and fake emotion, but you must actually be truthful to yourself and the poem in order to recite correctly. Be present in the moment. ~Abby
Today we started the first round of recitations for the class competition. I think Abby does a great job of explaining what it takes to do this task at the highest level in her closing thought.
Something that was pointed out to me was the different stories and personalities of all the people in this class that make this class so unique, special, diverse, and great.
Cal wrote this down after we completed a Paseo discussion about identity. This discussion is frontloading a poetry module on identity. The students will study the concept of identity and then write a poem based on structure Kevin Young's poem "Negative," which is seven triplets of free verse and deals with issues of race and identity.
I wonder what strategies other pods use to find their answers--does every pod in the class do it the same way or do they use other methods? ~Eli
Eli's closing reflection today is a great example of how to analyze process. How we arrive at our answers is just as important as the answers themselves. In particular, as we focus on preparing students for life in the 21st century, communication, collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity are vitally important--Eli's closing question touches on these skills by pondering how other teams communicate, collaborate, and think about problems. Great job Eli!
Jackson: Something that's circling in my head is how other students process and analyze questions and content.
Alarcon: This is a great observation--you can learn as much or more from your peers as you can from me!
J's closing reflection about today's lesson illustrates an important point about systems thinking and systems pedagogy. As Robert Quaden, eighth grade math teacher cited in Goleman and Senge's book The Triple Focus, points out, "You just naturally start thinking of the classroom as a system, and when you do that you see that you have a room full of teachers, not just one standing in front." When I see students like Jackson paying attention to the way his peers process and analyze questions and content, I know that we're on the right track!
Closing reflections: What's circling around in your head? What's something that was pointed out for you today? What is something that squared with your thinking?
I'm wondering how I can use more figurative language.
I realized Scout is a very dynamic character.
I learned it's not enough to say a character did something--you need to say why.
I'm wondering why purple team got a 4 and we didn't. Regardless, the gallery walk was useful.
I realized that I enjoy sharing my writing with the class.
I learned volume is less important than content.
I am wondering how I can better understand when to use literary language.
Motifs refer to early parts of the book.
Literary language is necessary for a good grade.
What is circling around in my head is that Tom Robinson is being convicted when it's clear as day that he didn't do it.
Bob Ewell got killed by Boo #Aha
Tom Robinson is like a mockingbird.
I need to be able to work better with my peers e.g. human knot.
I agree that our group should've gotten a 4, we did.
Our character is always changing as we are always growing.
Stoltzfus argues for a system not unlike the pod system that I designed. In particular, he says, "In groups of four, students are teaching each other, and teaching is the best way to learn anything."
As the Grady Cluster embraces 21st Century Skills, this talk gives students some tools to help them develop their communication and collaboration skills by speaking up for themselves. The answer to yesterday's post about conscious listening by Treasure.
Treasure argues that conscious listening leads to understanding, and that we need to teach listening in our schools. I have been looking for ways to do this at Inman, and I think Treasure's five exercises are a great start. In particular, his acronym RASA: Receive, Appreciate, Summarize, and Ask questions.