Thursday, August 12, 2010

First Day of School Lesson Plan

So here's my contribution to the slew of first day of school posts in the edu-blogging world.

I want to start my year by creating a climate of collaboration, friendliness, INFORMALITY(in school? you're crazy!).  From day one, I want my students to begin to take ownership of the class.  There is more than one person to learn from in the room, in fact, there's 30...and millions of others easily reached online, but that's for another day.

Something I will definitely do differently this year is not go over the grading policy immediately.  My main reason for this is that I want to set a tone of a collaborative environment, not that of a teacher saying, "This is the way it's going to be, there's the door if you don't like it."  Why would we want to start a year believing a class is difficult, instead of developing that conclusion on our own?

So, yes, you will have homework an assignment given the first day of class.  It's not going to be Read pgs 1-100 and do ALL odd exercises once you've completed your outline.  Your homework assignment will be to read my grading policy (Standards-Based all the way!) and be prepared to discuss it with your group members and with me.  If you're not going to read it or formulate ideas, how (more importantly, why) should we allow you to contribute to the class discussion?

So, what will we do the first day?  Probably get to know each other.  Once we're all comfortable with a learning community instead of a classroom, then we'll start with the content.  AP exam in May you say?  If you're not worried than I'm not.

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