Last night I was talking with my friends Ruth and Mary about this whole seventh grade thing, and it occurred to me that maybe I need to change my way of looking at it. Clearly I can’t teach seventh grade like I did high school, (Gee, ya think?!) so I’m going to begin a list of possibilities here. Let’s see…
Holding everyone’s attention at once doesn’t seem possible for me right now, for whatever reason. I wonder how I could use the idea of “centers” in my classroom. We have a paraprofessional in the department. Maybe I could use his help with this. Two of us with a center, two independent activity centers, something like that.
The McDougal Littel curriculum, while it includes some good stories that the kids do seem to like, is still not especially relevant. What about bringing in something like the NPR article about “Scraper bikes” and assigning kids to write about something like “What would you like to have that you can’t afford? How could ingenuity help you develop that thing?” http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=94318161. Something along that line. Maybe collect a few other ideas along that line prior to beginning this. This would seem to appeal to boys more than the short stories we’ve been reading.
More to come in this post.