The Big Fresh March 21, 2015 Taking Detours
Sometimes the most scenic roads in life are the detours you didn't mean to take.
I recently was in the midst of studying the novel Lord of the Flies with a group of seniors. We had been on a roll of great discussions and inquiry into the nature of human behavior. The students seemed to be enjoying the book; we were close to finishing…and then BAM--it was like someone hit the slow motion button on the remote. Interest began to wane, and despite my best efforts, we just couldn’t regain that momentum we had at the beginning. I had a goal in mind. I knew where I wanted my students to be and when I wanted them to be there. We had to finish this unit by next Tuesday…because I had written it in my lesson plan book…in pen!
This week we look at creative ways to overcome the spring slump in classrooms. Plus more as always -- enjoy!
Contributor, Choice Literacy
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Clare Landrigan offers advice for writers in Overcoming Slumps:
Audrey Hansen finds the best way to tackle the spring slump is to look objectively at the progress of her struggling students:
Gayle Robert at Responsive Classroom is Keeping Rules Front and Center During the Winter Slump:
Are you drowning in data? Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan's online course Making Assessments Work for You will help you organize and make sense of information you're gathering while keeping students at the center of your work. The course includes a DVD, Clare and Tammy's book Assessment in Perspective, three webcasts, and personal response from the instructors:
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Sometimes you get a class of students that pushes every one of your buttons. Shari Frost provides a case study of how one teacher is Surviving "That Class":
Mary Lee Hahn finds midyear is the perfect time for refreshing anchor charts:
Are you finding effort from students is flagging? Katherine Sokolowski develops Weekly Check-in Sheets as a way to lift student energy and reflection:
In this week's video, Katie Doherty Czerwinski tackles the challenging issue of helping a student catch up in book clubs and reader's workshop when they have missed a lot of class time:
Spring is a good time for quick reminder lessons and check-ins with students. In an encore video, Sean Moore works with a group of second graders to briefly reinforce how sticky notes should be used during independent reading:
That's all for this week!
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