Monday, February 17, 2014

inSPECt Update

Hello Education Universe-

I have been plugging away with my 7th graders using the inSPECt process I have blogged about previously.  I have tweaked my form and do it now electronically.  Perhaps this will be the future of the process.  This is what it looks like now:

Here's links to the form itself, scoring rubric, and explanation:

Now just getting them to do it is the key.  If ever there was a silver bullet, that would be the time.  Here is the link to the previous post to compare:
Investigating a Text and Looking Smart Doing It

Take Care,

Mr. J.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Now I Am the Master

Education Universe-

I did it.  I am a master of science in educational administration.  Fear me.

Not really... to the fear part that is.  7th grade girls aren't even scared of me.

I haven't blogged in awhile.  Been busy.  Trying to keep up with my 3 month old as well as staying motivated in the toughest leg of the school year has been a job in itself.  But I thought I would post a few thoughts about recent events in my journey to make kids learn.  It has been an uphill battle.

The flipped classroom approach as I mentioned before is very intriguing to me.  However it has to be something that can be sustained throughout the year by a teacher, students, and the hardware. I'm not sure which of those three has the most work to do at the moment.  So that idea is still on hold.

Gamification however looks promising. Building in the XP system has motivated some students.  Adding in the accompanying title belt system seems to have worked well too.  That has some success behind it now and I want to improve it going forward.

So as the Common Core begins to shape our instruction, my district is using the backwards design model to try to improve instruction.  I'm hoping that gamification can continue as my units may turn into "levels."  Each summative assessment can become a "boss battle", or something like that.  I think that even looking at the formation of guilds and including ideas such as crafting and avatar creation are possible.  Time to start thinking again.

Sometimes I'm guilty of putting fun or cool in front of instruction.  I need some balance, but I still want to be different.  That's important to me.

Well that's it.  Just checking in to say I'm still alive... if anyone else reads this that is.

Mr. J.