Category: academic awards

Day One Hundred Sixty-Six

My seniors realized this morning just how close they are to the end. I started APUSGOV by going over the plan for the rest of the unit: test next class, time to work on final projects during both classes (which will really be one class because of Senior Skip Day) next week, final projects due the following Tuesday. Someone asked, “That’s it?” and I nodded, and it hit a bunch of them that, yeah, there are really only four more days of APUSGOV. That is it.

One boy blurted out, “Oh man, I wasn’t ready for these emotions!” and got a chorus of “Same!” in response. 

So we took a moment, then got on with today’s class (a vocab quiz, a lecture on local government and town meetings, test review). I’m benevolent and all, so when I gave students the remaining time to work on their projects, I also let a bunch go upstairs to finish some crazy Physics assignment involving a bridge. I don’t really know what’s up with that, but it sounded stressful. They know when my project’s due; as long as they get it done, they get it done.

In World, students started drafting opinion pieces for their Multi-Genre Projects (if they hadn’t started already- a bunch of the A day students are ahead of schedule), and I checked in drafts of informational pieces. I was introduced to a site called Canva, which a handful of students are using to make their projects look like magazines (which is SO COOL). I love technology when it’s used like this; I love the tools students find. 

Another cool thing: last night was academic awards night, but I couldn’t go because I had a family thing to go to. So the ninth grader who’d received the award for excellence in World Cultures came up to me after class to thank me for it, and to tell me he loved this class. It was so nice, you guys. My teacher heart grew three sizes. 

Mrs. T had a meeting at the district office, so I watched her Block Four class for her during my lunch break. They’re working on Act III of Romeo and Juliet, so I got to come in and do stuff like rattle off lines from memory (I am a MASSIVE academic show-off), and point out that the play is anti-Catholic, and otherwise geek out about Shakespeare. So that was fun. And, afterwards, I went and ate cookies with Mr. F because why wouldn’t I?

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I did have actual lunch food, too, honest.

Practice was exciting because some of the athletes who’d been on the bubble to make the division meet found out that they were in, including my 4×100 girls! So now I’ve got two young relays headed to the big meet, and I couldn’t be happier for them. They’re nervous, of course, but they’re excited.

Day One Hundred Sixty-One

Today I introduced the final project of the year for World/English (the multi-genre project) by having students brainstorm topics. This project can be about anything they think is currently important to the global community, so it’s wide open and awesome. I’ll post the full topics list here when I have it. 

It’s a ton of fun to do the intro, but I struggled with my Block 3 class. I had a headache that was super distracting (if anyone is wondering why I didn’t take anything for it: painkiller allergy). Plus, we had an assembly (school-wide: on mental health) partway through the block, so it was choppy, and I felt rushed. But it got done.

Block 4 was awesome. The students got into the idea of this project immediately, and had so many topic ideas (and twice insisted on coming up with more just because they figured they could). They dug into the research, and I had some cool conversations about the links between different topics (like…gender, race, poverty, global warming), a goofy chat about pandas being better than otters (from two boys researching vulnerable and endangered animals), and a very serious discussion of school violence. 

One of my girls found that chart that shows deaths in US school shootings and deaths in the military this year, and started showing it to the kids sitting around her, which generated quite a stir. When I was asked to weigh in, I said this was something my family found tough to take. My dad is retired army; my brother is active duty. He went to war… And now they all worry about me. 

A lot of people do. 

That’s something I’m still sorting out my thoughts on…

Anyways. It was a good class.

Coach T and I ran practice today because The Head Coach was at the seeding meeting (say that five times fast) for States. Afterwards, I made myself presentable for academic awards. Mr. B and I always give out the ones for social studies. I get nervous, but I like recognizing outstanding students, so I deal. After presenting, I got a sudden allergy attack, so I spent most of my time to sneeze in the background during the other award presentations. So awkward!