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A weblog designed to share Geography resources with students and colleagues

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Excuses, rip offs, talking back and teaching lessons

Categories: s1 and s2, Population, Advanced Higher, Geography General, Other

Just going to start tonight's ramble with a few things which have grabbed my interest. Despite using delicious, saving favourites on twitter and other services like evernote and remember the milk, I am plagued with a terrible memory. This blog is still the place I am most likely to effectively find and use some of the good things that others have created, as I visit it most days for my teaching. Here's some of those creations that I've been reading about tonight:
1) I think I might introduce one of my s3 and all of my advanced higher to the emergency excuse generator which they can customise for homework excuses. At least that way, it'll be a novel tale I'm told. Alternatively, one could always try handing it in on time... ;) Thanks to Ollie for the tip.
2) In the last few months, I've probably gained more useful links from Richard Byrne's excellent resource sharing blog than from anywhere else on the internet. A very handy tool he blogged about recently will be of great help to advanced higher. The Paper Rater allows students to put their work through it, allowing any unconscious plagiarism to be picked out, as well as proof reading and grammar checking your work. I think this, coupled with a bibliography help tool will help ready work for final submissions. If we can get past second draft submissions.
3) I experimented with a class backchannel last s1 rotation and it worked quite well when using video in class, certainly making the lesson more seemless and probably more productive than stopping and starting the tape for discussion points. This presentation therefore interested me. I would like to get this s1 class on to glow. I'm making a group for them and would like to use glow chat for this, as well as trying a primary pad as a home learning activity. I'm trying to trim class time out of the Brazil unit as I feel we sometimes overdo it at the expense of other topics (although in feedback, it's always the most popular one), and think a primary pad collaboration would be a good way to make the home tasks a little different, engaging and less prone to sync issues that they have when using the school PCs. That way, we could still have all of the content, but less dead time in class with tech issues. I'm already really impressed by the way in which the class have responded to the last homework. I've put most of the solutions in the video at the top of the page and will ask the class to self check now and give themselves a rating. Before anyone comments, yes, my rainforest is a bit smaller than it should be!
This brings me nicely round to s1, who are in mid-Samba. Some sterling efforts under way, I really hope some of the class are game enough to record their efforts on the phone. I had thought about putting it out live via ipadio, but I think nerves and giggles would prevail ;) S3 (times 2) are at slightly different parts of the population unit of work, but both will be re-introduced to an old friend tomorrow after several periods of interactivity. In case that loses some people, I'm meaning the textbook...Might start the period with a bit of this though. Advanced Higher will be receiving the prelim back tomorrow. We'll spend a bit of time looking at this as there are worrying features of some responses so late in the year, and I am suggesting that we schedule some regular glow meets as supported study in the run up to the exam. The remainder of the double will be used for folio work. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel for some in the class, and the issues essays are now starting to look reasonably good with some tweaks, hoping the Study has been worked on over the weekend...


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