Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Today was an A+ Day

If I graded every single day, I would give today an A+.
To begin, my Block A class (CHC2P1) was fantastic...but that is typical.  We were in the library working on our photo album of the Depression and World War II.  The majority of the students hopped right onto the computers and got to work.  I hardly had to poke or prod them to get right to it.  One student asked me to check his first photo and caption.  He asked, "I'm going to use the PPE* method for my captions.  Is that okay?"  I was taken aback...I haven't taught the students PPE and didn't really expect that much detail.  Naturally, I told him that was a great idea, plus it's a really great example of his ability to transfer his knowledge to new tasks.  Based on checking the other students' work, I think there are going to be some stellar examples of learning.
My Block B class (CHC2D1) is rather challenging.  I am having a very difficult time engaging them.  It doesn't seem to matter what I do, nothing is interesting.  The object of today's lesson was to review conscription in World War I to frame our understanding of conscription during World War II.  Totally boring.  I wasn't sure how I was going to review the WWI conscription crisis, but I remembered that Lisa (@l_unger) has been playing around with, a "clicker-esqe" type web program.  I created a conscription crisis review quiz using socrative.   Each student signed into the quiz using their phones, plus I brought in eight iPads for students who didn't have an Internet capable phone.  The quiz was a hit.  Students cheered when they got the right answer and groaned when they didn't.  Some asked if we could do this more often.  (Fortunately, I have already planned a similar activity for Friday when we do the Italian Campaign.)  I finally found something that interested them.  Now I need to find some more tools to try and keep their interest.

My Block C class (ENG3U1) is always awesome, even though they (for the most part) do not enjoy reading Macbeth.  This blows my mind, because I love the play.  In February, a couple of students were late because they were at Dairy Queen.  I joked that the least they could have done was bring me a Smartie Blizzard, my favourite.  Fast forward to today...a couple of students bring me a Smartie Bllizzard.  I'm impressed they remembered that it was my favourite.  They're automatically getting A's.  (Actually...they legitimately have earned A's...I'm not that easily bribed.)
The final reason why today is an A+ day is my running.  My friend Holly and I went for a great run and I always feel great after a run.  Many of the English Department members are running, so we are starting an informal English Department Running Group.  Our first run is this Friday.  I'm looking forward to it.  Lastly, I signed up for my first 5km run.  It is called "Color Me Rad" and takes place June 22.

I love A+ days!

*For the non-teacher kind, PPE stands for Point, Proof, Explanation, which is a method for students to structure their writing.


  1. I'm so glad you shared your A+ Day!! It's great to have those. Now, I just have to figure out who's going to bring me a blizzard... Not my 2Ps - that's for sure!

  2. Good for you for trying the clicker type of activity! I like using the clicker programs too. The kids goof around at first but then start to get serious about it. The idea about putting the quiz on the clicker program is great. I will have to try that. I would like to try to get the kids to write their sample quizzes and then pick one at random to use. The feedback function you talked about sounds great. I will check out the Socrative site for sure!