ST Blog – Week 15


  • 2011 by Hoyle
  • Snopes
  • Trump Articles (Thumbs up and Thumbs Down)
  • Google Timelapse
  • Lonely Planet
  • Metrocosm Video
  • Technology Video – “Supersized Earth”
  • Videos about Trump
    • Thumbs Up
    • Thumbs Down


Lessons Taught:

  • Example of geography and climate of New York City
  • Trump Debate Challenge v. Miss Menard
  • Subbed one day – video about technology, claims about Trump’s first 100 days


Thoughts I Had During the Week:

  • Using Hoyle’s 2011 was really neat, because it’s futuristic predictions both matched up and didn’t match up to our lives today.  It fostered some great discussions and students were really into it.
  • CT used great real life example when talking about wants versus needs – his water suit. Actually brought it in. Kids thought it was cool. Nice to be able to make connections to real life
  • With springtime, coming back from vacation — classroom management was a bit tricky at times.  CT had to really make a statement early in the week to dial students back in – “How do you want me to remember you?”
  • One student has been having an extremely difficult time dealing with her mother’s death – for months it’s been a struggle to even have her in class. Teachers and administrators on the same page about being firmer with her, but it’s gotten really hard – it’s turned into babysitting. I understand that it’s important for her to be in the classroom learning with her peers, but she refuses to do anything and is distracting to everyone else in the class and bringing a few others down with her.  School isn’t the best environment for her to be in, but there aren’t really other options.
  • Debate Challenge with Miss Menard – challenging the reigning “smartypants” of the classroom.  I prepared two opposing claims for Trump’s first 100 days, and students could choose to take me on for either claim.  First class – they didn’t refute my claim, but shared their own claims – I won the debate (voted by CT and para).  Second class – went really well.  They challenged me on a lot of my points, and I wasn’t sure how to respond on some of those challenges. One student who is super politically charged was able to keep herself composed and rational which was great. No vote happened, we “tied”. It was a really great example for students to see how to make a claim and support it with evidence.
  • CT is planning a sendoff for me (only a little while longer!), calling it “Operation Baller”, sending me out of the classroom sometimes so they can prepare. 🙂



Teacher Meme of the Week:

Image result for student teacher memes

ST Blog – Week 15

ST Blog – Week 2

Some important resources:

This week I had a three day week. There was a snow day one day (YAY!) and then I had to miss a day for an out-of-state basketball game.  One day I got to teach a lesson on Tinker v. Des Moines. The lesson went pretty well, and it had some great student discussion.  I think it’s really important that students realize what rights they have in school, and how they differ (or don’t differ) from those that they have outside of school.  My cooperating teacher and I used this court case to introduce student rights, and I think this case (one of the most important and memorable in this category) was a great one to start with. It was a situation that students could understand (especially with all of the current protests), and one that really got them thinking about their own lives – what can they wear to school? We also had a great conversation about what teachers could and couldn’t wear, and how our position of power changes our ability to express our opinions.

One day my cooperating teacher was out, so I took the lead on teaching, although I had a substitute teacher with me.  I didn’t plan the day’s lessons myself, but taught what my cooperating teacher had organized. For the seventh grade group, we were continuing what we had been working on during the week, and it went really well. The eighth grade group did well too, aside from some students in one class who were talking over other students in our class discussion.  The eighth graders were doing a lot of independent work, and many of them did a lot of good work.

Some thoughts I had during the week:

  • My cooperating teacher does such a good job of making connections in the moment that he might not have anticipated.  There was a situation where a student asked a question that easily could have spiraled the conversation out of focus – but, my cooperating teacher kept his composure and handled the situation perfectly. I hope to have that “coolness” when I teach.
  • “Framing” – something to keep in mind is how you “frame” what students are about to do.  It’s important to set the stage for the lesson by emphasizing key points of learning, relevance to “real life”, and the purpose of learning the material.
  • The first time you teach a lesson, it likely won’t be the best version – you can make adjustments for the 2nd (or 3rd, or 4th) time!
  • Making connections to the students’ lives is important – my example was showing students their own school’s dress code, and asking them what they think teachers can wear – or can’t wear – to school.
  • When absent, making an “overview video” – when my cooperating teacher was out, he made a short video for both classes where he went over what they would be doing for class.  This was great because it not only let the students know of his expectations, but it gave me (and the sub) a better understanding of what was expected.
  • Inclusion – when I was leading a class discussion, I was able to incorporate a student with a disability (on the autism spectrum) that normally does not get to participate very much in class. The student’s para found an opportunity for her to join in on the discussion, and I was glad that I was able to call on her and have her be part of the class.

Teacher Meme of the Week:

Image result for teacher memes

ST Blog – Week 2

Day 16 – “I think I have a dollar in my bag!”

In today’s practicum, the students began with a journal entry that asked them to write a letter to the British Parliament about their concerns over the Stamp Act. Then, the students shared information about different colonial taxes that they had gathered as homework for today, and the class as a whole began to discuss the famous acts that contributed to the tensions that led to the American Revolution (they were able to cover the Stamp Act, the Tea Act, and the Sugar Act). After finishing the notes on each tax, the students completed a Kahoot about the tax to reinforce the knowledge.


Today’s big takeaway: making the information relevant to students. My cooperating teacher did a really great job of that today.  Before the students shared what they had learned about their assigned tax, their teacher took some time to explain how taxes work and really demonstrated to the students how this would affect their daily lives. She went around the room and took items from students, “demanding” 25 cents for them to have their possession back.  The students seemed to really get the point of why the colonists would have reacted to taxes as they did.  She explained how even though we are taxed today, we are given representation through electing officials who we hope will voice our concerns – the colonists, however, had taxation without any representation. I think that by connecting the content to the students themselves, and really forcing them to put themselves in the colonists’ shoes, my cooperating teacher was able to really get the message across. Students will be more likely to better remember that engaging, relevant part of the lesson rather than if they had only been told that the colonists were taxed without having a say.  By making the information relevant, my cooperating teacher fulfilled the “so what?” question that teachers so often get when teaching history.

Day 16 – “I think I have a dollar in my bag!”