Tuesday, August 19, 2014

creative responses and formative assessment...

Junior secondary students are required to read a book for 10 mins at the beginning of each English lesson...
The students choose their own book...
If they complete required class work,
students are encouraged to develop a creative response to their reading...
The one above is a sample of Alina's recent Year 8 work...

To foster interest in senior English studies, creative responses are encouraged too...
Above is Year 11 Sarah Dunstan's response to Macbeth, just using newspaper headlines...

Creative responses encourage students 
to connect ideas...
to express ideas differently...

They are a challenge for both the able and the less able students,
without the pressure of competition or
the feeling that someone is always better than someone else.
Some students complete these creative responses as they listen...a great tool to help them concentrate...
Creativity is an attractive goal
when the teacher needs to steer through lessons that students may find "not so appealing".
If we complete how to write an essay by this time... then we will create...
Concentration is paramount...

I now use creative folders in all my classes.
They are a wonderful asset when:
- many students are absent e.g. rally day
- after lunch lesson represents restless attitudes
- a bonus option when students complete required class work
- ideal for extension and remedial work (differentiation)  - I simply insert the appropriate sheets

Teaching is not just about 
recognising and acknowledging learning styles,
it is about encouraging a range of response styles 
for an optimum, ongoing measure of student performance...
that is what formative assessment is all about...

In summary,
 creative responses encourage 
the holistic measure of student performance...

a great resource for ideas...
56 Examples of Formative Assessment

shared on Edmodo 19.8.14

To teach is to keep learning

Friday, August 1, 2014

out of the comfort mould...

What if you seek to break young people free
of being hooked into
the trendy
the popular music

and you would
love to give them the experience of
other sounds

give them some music
by the young


55 years of Catholic were celebrated, last night (27), with a recital at the Teatro de Santa Isabel. The show was due to the Madrigal Unicap and had the title Un Viaggio Per Il Mondo Dell'Opera (A journey through the world of opera). In addition to the anniversary of the institution, the presentation celebrated the Jubilee Year of St. Ignatius of Loyola. The event was attended by the entire academic community and guests.
- translation - September 28 2006

Will be conducted by the Catholic University of Pernambuco, Madrigal Marlos Nobre and Community Pro-rector, the recital "Un viaggio per il mondo dell'opera". The event is part of the commemoration of 61 years of Catholic University and will take place on 27th September at 20:30, the Rev. Francisco Tavares de Bragança Cultural Center in Unicap.
- translation - September 2012
As Amadeu Guedes posted this above video March 2013,
it seems the trio were part of this later 2012 celebration????

Now I know the name of the trio - They are Il Volo

To teach is to keep learning

Monday, July 21, 2014

on finding emaze...

Powered by emaze

emaze is a user-friendly presentation platform
more "bendable" than PowerPoint and Prezi
offering a range of templates and effects - including 3D + animation

it's FREE!

Above is my first attempt at using emaze.
I have reduced the size for this blog post, but it can be enabled to full screen.)
I wanted to trial some possibilities
but there are more...

may be added...

Storage possibilities include

and it may be shared on

The free version does not allow a download, but it allows links and embedding.

To teach is to keep learning

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Unknown Man 'E'...

There is so much darkness behind the glitter of the pharaohs...
Rameses was a man who sought fame and glory
but there were those wished to terminate his golden journey..

Did Unknown Man 'E' connect with Ramses?
Both lay in the tomb of kings...
However Unknown Man 'E' was not fully mummified - he had a sheepskin...

Amazing that with all the studies of Ancient Egypt, we still are finding untold stories...

This video is for this who still are enchanted with the histories and the mysteries of Ancient Egypt...

The video could be used for:
History - enhancing the wonder of the life of pharaohs
English - review of a documentary

More reading on the history of theories about this mummy are HERE.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

what if...

card created using my photo + haiku  and 3D Postcard Generator

what if
you took a class of reluctant Shakespeare-suffering Year 9 students

to take roles in Romeo and Juliet

there was a verandah and a couple of steps at the old drama studio
now used as a small chapel

the steps faced the oval

what if
the only instructions given the students were
sit anywhere as the audience
use anything in the immediate environment
if you have a role to play

what if
the students liked the idea
but enjoyed being outside the classroom

what if
as lessons passed
role players did not want others to take their roles
and the audience enjoyed asking the role players
questions about their character
what they were thinking
how they felt
as part of the last minutes of each lesson

what if
students owned their roles
and actually began
in character

what if
the audience
loved the play
more and more
the role players
to be
more and more
in character

what if
more and more
I had less and less to do

what if
the students were sad
that the play

what if
I was sad

Wordle: 21st Century Teacher Portfolio - blog wordle 15.7.14

To teach is to keep learning

Monday, July 14, 2014

Celebrating the Value of Failure...

team work
Thomas Edison did not "invent" the light bulb overnight.
There were many trials.
 He said,
I have not failed; I've simply found ten thousand ways that won't work.
(In fact, many claim he only improved on the electric light bulb
that had existed for up to 50 years before his 1879 U.S. patent.
The first light bulbs lasted 150 hours while Edison's lasted 1,200 hours
Further, Edison did own a power company.)

instant failure is a time to:
take a walk
think differently
improve the trial
feel excited about a new idea

instant failure wears a harness
checks the safety net

instant success has the potential for:
unforeseen hurdles
pride before a fall

instant success
heads for
free fall
without a parachute

Failure may help us to discover what we seek to learn
AND discover many byway, unexpected ideas as well.

A naval engineer, Richard Jones was trying to design a meter to monitor power on naval battleships.
He worked with tension springs and one fell to the ground from a shelf.
It kept bouncing
and bouncing...
The slinky was born in 1945...

Walt Disney's first animation company went banktrupt.
He was fired by a news editor because he lacked imagination.
Some say he was turned down 302 times before he received financing for Disney World.

JK Rowling was penniless, recently divorced, and raising a child on her own,
when she wrote the first Harry Potter book on an old manual typewriter.
 12 publishers rejected the manuscript!
A year later, Barry Cunningham from Bloomsbury agreed to publish her book
but insisted that she get a day job because children’s books were not money spinners.

It almost seems to mean that
big failure
has the potential
with persistence
to breed
big success

Let's teach our students to face failure with strength and not give them
a false sense of success.
For too long we have worried about students' self esteem
and cultivated it with a barrage of successful comment.
Their self esteem should not be built on false values in the protected school world
leaving it prime for a huge downfall out there in the open real world.

Let's give our students pride in beating failure.
Let's give them a rock
not shifting sands...

I have long believed in the merits of failure as a means of progress...

To teach is to keep learning

Sunday, July 13, 2014

on finding Padlet...

I have just found Padlet...

It is an easy-to-navigate app enhancing the teacher-student connection...

In Term 3, I will be conducting a Haiku Workshop for secondary students.
I decided to create a visual wall of prompts with Padlet.
I can make a choice to simply screen this wall to the students,
I am considering that students should create a wall of prompts with accompanying haiku in addition to this one.

All haiku are mine...
I am being a role model...
Past experience has taught me that writing with the students inspires even the reluctant writers...

The free version is quite effective. The cost versions have more bells and whistles.
Padlet comes as a convenient Chrome extension too.

To teach is to keep learning
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