Well, gotta say, I am rather pleased with the results of the kids’ first formal Performance Opportunity. All seem to have put their best efforts into the task despite the fact that their grade, their A is already in the books. That is not to say, that each met the standard. To be sure, many did, but many have a ways to go, and because of the P-180 approach to learning, they will have other opportunities; they have to have other opportunities. Learning is not a line; learning is a circle. In the P-180 classroom learning, not covering, is the goal. Therefore, we will continue to cycle back to the Super-Student Standards, giving kids as many chances as necessary to grow within the standard. And really, that is a key difference in the P-180 classroom.
Whether it is a Practice Opp. or a Performance Opp, growth is the goal. Each opportunity, practice or performance, is an opportunity for feedback on how to reach that growth goal. And though some of the kids are still warming up to the idea that feedback is critical, not personal, the vast majority are seeming to embrace it as a necessary means to a necessary end, and as such, they have begun to let go of the emotional responses that have been generally associated with teachers’ judgments of their efforts, emotional responses that sometimes unconsciously but almost always inevitably impact learning. My great hope is that as we continue down the P-180 path, all will arrive at a point where they fully trust my approach and begin to immerse themselves in the growth opportunities. That is probably too much to hope for, but I am motivated by the fact that only 33 days in, a good many are already there. I will continue to work hard at earning their trust. Every day.
On to another topic, today the kids will begin their blogs. I am so excited about this part of their My-Learning Projects. Using Google’s Blogger, the kids will create and maintain a blog for their projects, reaching a real audience. What’s cool is that they have a great deal of creative control, and what’s even cooler–from my position–is that I will get to help them develop their craft as writers in an authentic context. So much of what we attempt to teach kids doesn’t stick because it lacks an anchor, a relevant and meaningful experience to keep hold of the learning, but I am hoping that the blog experience provides an adequate anchor to make stick all that I intend to toss their way. Truly excited about where this could lead.
Happy Monday, all. Have a great week.