This school year has definitely been challenging at best! This school starting at the end of August and then immediately afterwards we had Labor Day and then Hurricane Florence. We were out of school for a week and it feels as if we started the school year from the beginning once we returned. It was necessary to reteach rules and classroom procedures with my students. It feels as if we are getting into a routine again and I have introduced my Kenan project idea to the Business class. They are enthusiastic and I am excited to get it launched.
During Summer Institute there was a presentation dealing with Project Based Learning. My curiosity was peaked in exposing this technique to my classes. In prior school year’s I have occasionally had some challenges in keeping my student’s attention during certain lessons. I realized that collaboration as well as kinetic activities result in more positive results. Many of my lessons now have a project connected to the objectives and I see that my students have better understanding of the content by working together after I have presented the curriculum. An additional reason I chose this direction deals with the need for my students to stay active throughout the class period.
My students are really enjoying having projects incorporated in their lessons. They have expressed to me that they really enjoy having other options to learning than the standard lecture, powerpoint, and study guides. I also believe that there is a higher level of comprehension when my students talk among each other on the curriculum. I have found that a teenager explaining to another teenager is done in “their language”. What I am trying to say is sometimes we as teachers speak on a level “higher” than our students unknowingly. My kids are able to discuss in “their language” my same content. I also see a sense of accomplishment as well as pride when my students present their projects. From a teacher’s perspective I am so proud of my students because they are taking responsibility for their learning. There is less confrontation when it comes to completing assignments because I am also allowing them to express their creativity as well as work with their friends. Behavior has improved due to this flexibility and I am receiving assignments on or near the due dates. I believe it is a win-win situation!