Monday, August 29, 2011

One week down...

I hope this post finds all well, and your first week of school to have been a smooth one.  Hopefully by now you have had a chance to identify some of those "big rocks" we talked about a few weeks ago, and perhaps even started introducing them.  Remember - these are the practices you put in place for your kids to do that not only provide them with anchor pieces (pieces they can do independently), but more importantly build on those strategies that are essential for the students to reach automaticity in  (i.e. the skill goes "underground" and becomes second nature)in your content.  For those of you that would like to "play along", respond to this post with one of your "big rocks".  Have a great week!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Lots of Thinking...and a challenge!

After listening to both Bruce Goodner last Thursday, and then Alan November today - I am SO energized...and challenged!  I'm pretty sure I looked like a bobble head as both of these (what I consider to be) great minds shared their visions.  Having said that, it occurs to me that there are probably many out there who heard their message, and thought something along the lines of, "This all sounds great, but it won't work with my kids because (fill in the blank with all the reasons why)."  Truthfully, I understand that thinking, AND I wish we had the forum to discuss all the "Yeah, buts..." that exist - because there are plenty, I'm sure.  Yet, I wholeheartedly believe that the ideas proposed by these two men are completely do-able (and, dare I say, necessary!), IF we replace the words "but it won't" with "how will it", and then convert the statement to a question.  As we enter into this next school year, I encourage you to (1) put on those rose colored glasses, and (2) when faced with a new idea, ask yourself how it will work with your students. 

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Do you Tweet?

Hi all!  In talking with a colleague about "kicking off" workshop in the coming year, and my hope that I had (1) made sense and (2) had presented the "vision" in such a way that it was doable, we realized that there is another "tool" out there that is both free, and easy to get to - namely Twitter.  I must confess, I'm not much of a Tweeter, mainly because I just haven't been able to see much use for it.  However, as a result of our conversation, it occurred to me that I could use Twitter as a way to send regular tweets on what is going on in my classroom. If you would like to follow the tweets, my name is "wkshopclassroom". 

If you've never tweeted, but would like to, go to and set up an account.  It's free, and very easy (it's also a great way to keep your parents updated on what's going on in your classroom!).

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Workshop Rock - WishList

I began with a year-long linear wishlist to move toward a defined plan and time line.(You should see the drawing!)

Workshop Rocks Wish List - Weekly unless noted

I. Reading - dialectical journal (?) Some type of reading response??

A. conference(s) - student/parent/teacher/book clubs
B. Academic Language Comment
C. Vocabulary Inquiry/Connection
D. Comprehension piece comment: question, monitoring...etc.
E. Genre properties/40 book progress

II. Writing

A. Journal - open - absolutely free choice - OhLife!, Google Docs-
B. Piece a Week - towards preparation/scaffold for curricular piece or OER
C.. Brush Stroke/Voice Lesson Practice Homework – Alternate each week
D. Collaborize – on line - responses, comments, posts – per 2 weeks
E. Recording of written work progress - (How to make this a genuine reflection? Frequnecy??)

III. Language of Opportunity

A. Teacher/Student/ Visual Thesaurus generated – Word Power
B. Weekly word activity
C. Academic Language? Undetermined

IV. Speaking/Listening/Presenting

A. Conferences - reading with teacher notes
B. iPadio Book Club pod casts – frequency determined by club – 1 per 3 week period
C. Book critiques – tied to 40 Book requirement and technology presentation – frequency under consideration
D. Technology presentation – 1 per 3 week period
E. Seminar Participation – Inner-Outer-Outer Circle- Etiquette of conversation transferred to Netiquette and Videquitte – Likely 6 week period to have 100% assessed

V. 21st Century Learning – Weaved through Rocks/Curriculum

A. Project/Problem/Passion BL - Global project – Future Studies in Stages - Fall semester – skill acquisition, Spring Semester - Implementation
B. Flow – Collaboration Skill: Collaborize, Wiki, Google Apps,
C. Personal Learning Network – platform selection, creation, maintenance, participation, and concept of Pull technologies
C. Media Literacy
1. Study of film as literary genre – consumption, critical analysis, and creation
2. Focus tied to curricular piece – ex. Documentary – expository/persuasive
D. Global Awareness - issue study – scaffold for global project, expository study
E. Digital Citizenship
F. Distance Skills – Skype, Google+, Black Board Collaborate,

Getting Ready...

Now that you've been through the first two days of the "Workshop workshop", take a moment to reflect on what we've discussed, and choose one of the questions below to respond to (although you're welcome to answer more than one!).
  • What do you see as your content's "big rocks" - those underlying skills that students will need to become adept in your curricular area?
  • What do you foresee as your biggest challenge in terms of implementing workshop in your classroom?  How might you meet this challenge?
  • What are you still wondering about?  

Monday, August 1, 2011

Day One Down!

Well, by the time you read this, we will have been through the first day of "Getting It All Together: Implementing the Workshop Model in the Secondary Classroom". I hope that today left you feeling empowered to use this model in your own classroom.  Please feel free to post any questions for me here, and, as we continue down this road together, use this blog as a forum for all of us to share our ideas, questions, and yes,  frustrations.