Deep into Days in a Sentence

There was another wonderful collection of Days in a Sentence from folks this week. I am always surprised and interested when another submission finds its way into my blog bin. Here goes:

In Massachusetts, we are entering our testing season — the MCAS. Mary, my colleague at the Western Massachusetts Writing Project, is already thinking of how the testing can be turned to her advantage. She is so smart like that.

I wish that helping students become better test takers actually helped them become better learners. Alas, I feel the real test comes after all our tests are over.

You have all read about the tragic fires in Australia and Anne M. is right there, teaching her students about safety and we call cross our fingers that the drills don’t turn into reality for her.

A more settled week at school, where we practiced fire drills in anticipation of a high risk bushfire danger day again today (Friday) but fortunately all is well for us.

Ghosts in the computer? Hacker spirits? Byte-sized sprites? Lynne C. experienced some oddities in the lab this week.

My timer blasts for no reason, and one of the computers repowers up out of nowhere; noise kharma?

Ken gets his Haiku mojo up and running this week.

With no computer
there’s time to reflect on life
without a PC.

Janice suffers from the pressure to put a grade on knowledge acquisition when her gut tells her that it might not be the most adequate way to gauge learning and progress in her students. I think her conundrum is also most of ours, right?

This week I hate that the timelines of report cards seems to contradict almost everything we know about good teaching practice; the kids aren’t ready, I know they’re not ready, but I test them anyway just so I’ll have marks to put on report cards. Aaargggghhh!

Did someone say Groundhog Day? Matt enters the cycle.

I’m wrapping up loose ends to begin the process again.

Shaun experiences both sides of the coin.

I have been the assessed and the assessor, to grow as a learner and to grow my learners.

Happy birthday, Elona!

This week my granddaughter and I combined our birthday celebrations-she’s 4 and I’m 4+.

sara is feeling .. uh … antsy.

oh my god – not having a vacation at this time of year is akin to being swarmed by angry hornets and seeing the smoke pot twenty yards away.

Mary Lee has been away and now wants to return. I have some snow and ice and cold that I can let her have, for cheap!

Weeks full of long days and hard work got me to this Phoenix IRA pause, and it’s been SO good to slow down in the sun, but I am ready to go back to clouds and cold and work and family and home and friends and students and routine.

Aram is faced with a dilemma I bet a lot of high school teachers, in particular, face in this age of easy cut-and-paste-with-no-attribution research papers. I don’t have an answer for him but I wonder if there is a better approach out there for him. Maybe creating multi-modal documents that force students to be creative and make their own materials?

After discovering the fifth research paper that “borrows” freely from Wikipedia, I seriously am considering completely pitching the way I teach research papers, as opposed to calling them all lazy.

Two years of work … off in the mail and Nina can breathe a sigh of relief.

As I mailed 11.5 pounds of an institute self-study we have been working on for almost 2 years, I felt an even bigger weight lift off my shoulders.

Stacey — whose collaborative site, Two Writing Teachers, begins the Slice of Life Challenge this week that is worth checking out and participating in — had one of those heart-thumping moments that I hope you never experience (but I have).

I consider myself lucky since my defensive driving skills saved me from an accident on 95 South this evening… scary!

I was not sure if this was Bonnie‘s sentence, but I like it because it shows how immersed she is in working with teachers and kids, and how ambitious she is.

I am getting ready to work with 100 6th graders as they create digital stories.

Ben is riding high on a pave of optimism and pride in his students, and I think we should all ride along with him. When one of us succeeds, we all succeed.

My students (11th grade) have truly impressed me with their ability to rise to my expectations for literary quote IDs. Judging by their performance on my test, I would say that those who made 80%+ on my test could walk in to a college English class at a university and perform and get the same grade as the university students. I have never been so proud of students.

Cynthia, a dear friend from the National Writing Project, had some good news, too, as an initiative to create a Technology Institute seems to be gaining ground when she gathered up a crucial audience.

A small modicum of success–today the Alcorn Writing Project’s leadership team agreed to be the participants in our first technology institute!

Amy had a breather, thanks for a holiday.

On this three day weekend celebrating Casimir Pulaski, I am appreciating an extra day for catching up.

Parades … dancing … Lynn J. also has a nice break. I bet we see some evidence on PhotoFridays in the coming week, right?

Grateful that today is Saturday and I can forget about the kids for a couple of days, I’m headed out to watch them march and dance in a parade this morning.

Thank you to everyone and one final note: The Slice of Life Challenge for the month of March is now up and running over at Two Writing Teachers and I encourage you to consider joining in the fun of writing about those central moments of life. I “ran” into Stacey and Ruth last year with the Slice of Life and found it a great way to connect with others. See Two Writing Teachers for more information.

Peace (in sharing),

  1. Several DIS contributors have mentioned report cards and assessments. It reminds me of a tweet this week by the great Bill Graziadei, PhD. He sent his followers off after a link on learning that really gave me reason to rethink yet again. What is our real objective and how will we be able to tell that it has been achieved? Jay Cross writes about the importance of peer learning and PLNs. here’s the link
    (still working on my links in comments code)

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