These are the words of 7th grade math teacher, Bonnie Wareham, when describing her students almost unanimous agreement about enjoying her flipped classroom iPad project, for which she received a 2012 Teacher Innovator Award . The annual Teacher Innovation Awards are sponsored by PBS LearningMedia and the Henry Ford.
For this pilot project, she and the class designed “Ladder of Success” together as “ a way for students to demonstrate their understanding of Common Core standards.” She describes the program as a “joy” that allowed her to immediately review students work and give feedback, which then provided them with a process for reviewing and revising their work before returning it for a final assessment.
You can read how this method transformed the classroom environment where students have endless options such as creating movies, picture collages, puppet shows, snapshots of written work and cartoons. In addition to — and more important than – their higher grades, Bonnie shares how “students are able to explain their understanding in math language, work collaboratively, and are confident in their abilities. They are creating their own situations and then solving them.”
What do you think about flipped learning or this “Ladder of Success” pilot project? What challenges and/or successes have you had teaching math?
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PBS NewsHour Extra offers this wonderful lesson for grades 7-10 from The Academy of American Poets, which presents a series of activities for the classroom that allow students to explore and interact with poetry by writing letters to poets. Aligned with the Common Core Standards, activities address the three literacy areas of Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening. You can use the series of activities one right after the other, or separate them as you integrate poetry with other areas of your curriculum. The activities are designed to reach diverse learners, but if you need to adapt them further, you can feel free to do so.
Sections include video, pre-activities, whole class, as well as individual/small group activities, and vocabulary. Here’s a sample of objectives just for Activity 1: Selecting Favorite Poems from Historical Poets of Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Langston Hughes, Robert Frost, Pablo Neruda and William Carlos Williams
Identify poets whose poetic voices speak to them
Select one of these poets and his or her poem to consider more deeply
Provide verbal explanation/evidence about why they have chosen this poem and poet to their peers
As an added bonus, in conjunction with the Academy’s celebration of letter writing and correspondence this National Poetry Month (April 2013), you are invited to submit your students’ letters to the Dear Poet project for a chance to receive handwritten responses from poets.
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