Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Decisions, decisions

I'm wondering now if I should use the Blog tool in Blackboard rather than have students post to Blogger.com or some other Blog site. Maybe I'll ask the students what they would like to do.

That means, though, that I have a very short window of time to remember how to do the Blog tool in Blackboard. Best get busy!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

New beginnings, old mistakes

Well, first class of the new semester is over and I'm looking forward to this semester. For the first time ever we've managed to schedule four sections of the READ class by content area. While that may be more comfortable for students, I wonder if we have sacrificed the opportunity to promote interdisciplinary connections and to push our students to think more like experienced teachers. It's sometimes difficult for pre-service teachers to adapt strategies they experience in the context of a lesson that is not taken from their own content area. On the other hand, when math pre-service teachers experience a math lesson, they really don't experience it like students -- they have too much prior knowledge. It's a real conundrum. I'm not sure how this will work but I'm looking forward to the semester.

Class today was OK - but not great. I was disappointed in myself, and as I think about it, I wish I had eliminated the think writes and just kept the What's Easy/What's Hard activity. When I required the Literacy Autobiography, the think writes were important -- but since I eliminated that assignment I'm not sure I need to keep them. If I had eliminated those think writes, I might have had enough time to do the chapter mapping justice - but these are college seniors -- they don't really need me to model that strategy but they do need to see me model how to handle assigning that kind of note making strategy to high school students. Reminds me once again to quit trying to do too much in each class. I'll have to go back to the schedule and make some adjustments.

I can see that I need to build in time on Tuesday to have students set up their Blogs -- and I 've got to talk to Agida about the math journals. I hope we can combine those assignments because I cannot eliminate mine - it's tied to the Conceptual Framework. Oh well, tomorrow is another day.