Most noteworthy recent teaching events...
#1 - Guided Study Class - going very well! These 4 sections of 8th graders are from 2 teams, so I find out what work they have, keep them on track during class, and review for tests/quizzes. Students are very cooperative, so we'll see if there are visible improvements soon. What I didn't expect was being questioned by coworkers who are also my friends about the validity of the program and whether this is the best use of my supposed skills and expertise. So I explain as best I can the goals and expectations of the course and try not to be defensive.
#2 - Scoring student writing on the state assessments - last Thursday and Friday and 2 more days next week!
#3 - I still teach 6 sections of ELA Lab to 6th and 7th graders, and we started a nature poetry unit! SO FUN! Each lesson, I focus on one poetry element (such as imagery, white space, etc.). We read a poem, watch about 10 minutes from the Planet Earth series (our school library owns the DVD collection, but anyone can watch episodes on the web site free!), and then students write about what they saw using the poetry element of that lesson. We'll use this format to study poetry elements for about 2 weeks, then students will write nature poems using elements that we studied. I'm working on this culminating activity - each student creates a web page with his/her own poem and graphics, and the web pages will be posted on my teacher (school) web site!