wind in my sails

I teach kids, kids that are 13 to 14 and getting ready to enter high school. It’s fun and exhausting; and even though it’s work, I don’t call it work, because when it becomes work, I think I’ll quit and never go back. I hope that day never comes, I mean the day when it becomes work.

That’s why, when I get an e-mail like I did today, it gives me the energy to keep going.

Hi Clayton,

Congratulations! You’ve been accepted into the Recap Pioneer program! Here’s a badge for your blog. Please send us a short bio and photo for the Pioneers page.

I am excited.

2016-pioneer-badgeLet’s Recap is free software that teachers can use to assign a question and students can respond by recording a video response. It’s easy to use and easy to use for my students. I’ve used it twice, once on a test run and more recently last weekend to gauge how well my students understood why the American colonists were upset with England and King George III in the period leading up to the American Revolution. In previous years I’ve assigned a protest letter and students wrote the letter and handed it in to me. This year I tried Recap and I was impressed with the results. My students still used the traditional planning with pen and paper- though it wasn’t required – but the results showed deeper thinking and I believe better transfer of the content. I’ll discover how well it worked next Friday when I give the unit assessment.  Fingers crossed.

Teaching is an art. There’s the fine line of balance between content and skills as well as the line between how much I do and how much my students do. Teaching and learning are very different from when I began 17 years ago and when I was an 8th grader 41 years ago. But kids are mostly the same, they need a challenge and they need to know I care. That’s where I get most of my energy, from the kids.

the from of my room with Martin Luther King suspended over a group's table
the from of my room with Martin Luther King suspended over a group’s table

So it’s early Friday morning and usually I limp, in more ways than one, into the last day of the school week. But not this week, Tuesday I was at a Constitutional seminar backed by the Bill of Rights Institutive and Thursday afternoon, I got the extra boost I needed to sail into Friday with energy when the e-mail arrived from Recap. It’s gonna be a great day, I know it and I can feel it. Making the Days Count, one day at a time, one little change to the way I teach and assess. Learning every day.

What gave you the boost to make it through Friday?  

7 thoughts on “wind in my sails

    1. Thank you, I was’t exactly certain either, but the student’s protest videos were great and showed deep understanding of the content than the letters had shown. I am still playing with the platform and have more questions. But, questions are good! Have a wonderful weekend and great week ahead. Can’t wait for the new word!

    1. Thank you – I came home exhausted Friday evening with a stack of papers and a long list if things to do – but very excited. I’ve got a great group of students this year and I am excited to have them all in class. Have a wonderful day!

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