Saturday, March 1, 2014

In like a lion

Today March is coming in like a lion.  Certainly this means that it will be going out like a lamb.  Right?  I hope so because this seems like a long winter!  It started snowing yesterday at 3:00 and it continued to snow all day today.

Snowy days are perfect for books and coffee and this is just how I started today at the young adult book club!  This is my favorite way to start my weekend!  Today the young adult book club discussed "Matched."  I found it to be a fun read.  There were many surprises in the book that left me wondering and wanting more.  There are two more books in the trilogy and I hope to read them too...someday when I have extra time ;)  Maybe this summer but it seems like my reading list just keeps getting longer and longer...so many great books and not enough hours in the day.

Tonight I decided to grade my magnet and electricity assessments so that Sunday I can relax and enjoy a day of rest.  My students did so well on this assessment!  I am very excited to share the results with them on Monday!

I have been doing a hybrid SBG this semester and I have seen great changes in my classroom.  The assessment on Friday was evidence of this.  One of my "struggling" students that nearly failed first semester science currently has a B!  Third quarter will finish this week.  In the past, by the end of the quarter struggling students have given up and quit.  However, this time the environment in my classroom has changed and now my struggling students have hope.  They know they can have more time to relearn and reassess on learning goals.  On Friday my struggling student said to me, "I studied this Mrs. Hurst and I'm going to get at least a 3."  (He did get a 3!)   He was so excited to see how well he did on his assessment that he came in after school to see his grade.  He said he couldn't wait to go home and tell his dad.  What a great way to start the weekend...not only for my student but for myself too!

7 comments:

  1. Welcome to blogging and slicing. You will have fun with both. As I read your post, I wondered what had changed - what you felt changed that would give struggling students hope?! Keep at it, your students are responding.

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    1. Thanks for your reply Alyson. I have changed a few things this semester that really seem to help my struggling students. One of the biggest things that I've changed are my assessments. My assessments now are only 4-6 open ended questions about science concepts. I no longer use multiple choice, fill in the blank, matching etc. I think this has really helped because now students just tell me what they know what they learned instead of them trying to figure out a possibly tricky worded question. Also I now allow them the opportunity to retake assessments and I always take the new and better score. My struggling students now know that they can relearn and reassess until they have reached mastery. I have found that students really do care and they really want to do well.

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  2. Your post today is very encouraging! I work with struggling students everyday and would love to hear more about your hybrid SBG. I teach ELA (english language arts) and am always looking for ways to build my students self-efficacy in the classroom so they can in turn feel success over their assessments and the content! Thank you for this post!

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    1. My 9th grade science class is a required class so I get to teach a variety of students. I love teaching that class because I think my diverse students help me to be an even better teacher! This semester I have changed my assessments. Instead of a traditional test I give weekly quizzes over smaller chunks of material. Also my assessments are only 4-6 open ended questions so I can see if they have mastered the concepts. This has helped my struggling students because now they just share with me what they know instead of trying to decipher challenging questions and wording. I have seen this really help my ELL students. I also allow my students to relearn and reassess until they have reached mastery. They never have a reason to fail now.

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  3. Welcome to the Slice of Life community! I am so glad you decided to join us! I want to hear much more about what you are doing in your classroom as you are able to help your struggling students!

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  4. A high school science teacher and in a young adult book club? I love it! I'm a high school English teacher, so reading is near and dear to my heart. I love when I can share books with other teachers and kids can see that not only the English teachers read!

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    1. Thanks Deb! I LOVE reading! I learned this from my mom as she loved reading too and I have fond memories of her taking us to the library. She took us to libraries and bookstores often. I love the young adult book club! Have you read "Between Shades of Gray?" It is one of my favorite books. If I taught history I would use that book. We read that one a few months ago. This time we are reading "Thirteen Reasons Why". I enjoy hearing what others are reading.

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