Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Let students be teachers?

Last semester, I informed Year 9 Geography students that the next topic would be "pollution.".
The response was GROAN!... MOAN!... CONTORTED FACES!
They complained that this topic had been visited in primary school.
But we had a surprise for them!

THEY would be doing the teaching!

Their task required research of a pollution topic + filming.
The criteria appears below, but we allowed a little creative flair - because that could demonstrate an understanding of the research.

Identified elements of a healthy Australian ecosystem
Clearly showed the effects of pollutants on an Australian ecosystem
Explained in detail what can be done to remedy a polluted ecosystem
Presentation is detailed, demonstrating a clear understanding of research
Documentary/short film is appropriately edited containing only important/relevant  information
Evidence of relevant note-taking and appropriate planning
Used variety of resources and inclusion of bibliography

The groans transformed into enthusiasm. 
Many of the class extroverts took the opportunity to add a little personal drama - such as Nicole's above.

Each video required presentation to the class.
In the preparation stage, I ensured that each student covered a different perspective of pollution.

Was the pollution topic successful?

At the end of each video screening, the creator faced class questions.
Some meaty discussion followed.
(Criteria - Explained in detail what can be done to remedy a polluted ecosystem)

I believe the task was very successful.
The students were involved and interested in each video.

And I learnt a fact or two too!

Such fun!

Let students be teachers?
I think that it's a very good idea...once in a while!

To teach is to keep learning

1 comment:

gpegram said...

I love the idea of letting my students be teachers! As first graders, many of my students see their job as being knowledge consumers. This year, I am trying to help my students see themselves as possessers of knowledge, who learn from their teachers, their peers, and share their knowledge with others. I try to make sure they teach me something each day. I have definitely seen my students begin to take more responsibility of their own knowledge since they know they will be teaching others. I believe your project could be adapted to first graders as well. They could do their own research on a topic, even in a small group or with partners, and teach what they learn to the rest of their classmates. Can't wait to hear how your students rise to the challenge!

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