Today, I found myself sitting in awe as I stared at the computer screen after a long day of teaching. The first day back after March Break is always a trying time – for both teacher and student. A week and a half away from classroom routines, expectations and lessons can lead to some stumbling blocks when it comes to re-starting the learning.
A few weeks ago, I began a new venture in our literacy program…student blogs. Each student created a blog which would serve as another vehicle for them to keep writing and receive feedback on a variety to writing prompts and topics. We spent the time to set them up and students had an opportunity to personalize them with new layouts and customized features. But then things became busy and our student blogs became one of the things that “fell off the plate.”
Or so I thought…
Now, student blogging – to me – is an incredible opportunity to engage my class and further their literacy learning. I attach each student blog to my class blog so that I can monitor, evaluate and give feedback – as well as the students to each other. Another purpose of this is to provide parents with an opportunity to read their child’s writing, and even share in the experience with the student, after school hours at home.
However, the best intentions became clouded by the daily grind of work. Student blogs slowly faded into the background.
And then there was today.
When I came home after school I logged into my class blog page and decided to click on a few of student blog links. I was excitedly surprised! Many of my students have posted to their blogs on a bunch of different themes and some even began posting consistently on personal books they’ve read and sharing reflective insights about their own life and memories.
Plant a seed. Walk away. Let the rain take care of the rest. Sometimes our vision just needs time and space to grow.
Think of a time when you were left in awe by something your students did. How did the experience shift your perspective about the way you facilitate the learning process in your teaching practice?
During Neilʼs 10 years of teaching experience, he has taught in London, England; Ontario; public and private schools; elementary and secondary; junior; intermediate; core french; developmental skills; and junior gifted (grades 4,5,6). He is a Reading Specialist that has been incorporating technology in his practice consistently throughout his career. Neil has recently published his first book entitled “Ignite. Incite. Inspire.” – Examining 21st Century Issues in Education, which is a collection of teaching articles and posts written from January to December 2011.