I’m back, sort of.

The wiki has been keeping me pretty busy. Version 1.0 of idiosyncratically useful websites will be ready in a couple of weeks. I plan on actually letting people know about it then. I am still struggling, however, with all of the excess great ideas from other people. I wish that I could clip things directly from other people’s blogs into my bloglines clip folder. It would make things easier. Recently (over the last day or so) I have been finding a lot of things that may help our Language Arts department in this coming year. This idea I couldn’t furl or clip in bloglines, so I thought here would be a good spot for it.

Wendy, a co-chair of our department, and I have been talking about different ways of reflecting after/during meetings. Karl of Fischbowl fame had his fellow teachers answer to these five categories with his own examples:

  • Setting– too dark and difficult to hear everyone’s thought. The computer room didn’t allow for an open discussion. Many people were typing a theri computer rather than listening and aprticiapting in the class discussion.
  • Pressure to do all of the technology pieces-we were all over the place in terms of feedback on this topic. Some were glad to try something new, others didn’t believe that their participation in this class required the implementation of all of the new pieces of technology.
  • Participation– we were accepted into this program to try and change our way of teaching, and so we should be expected to participate in the discussion and the class. We can’t move forward if we don’t all focus and contribute when we are together every two to three weeks for only three hours. We need to leave the “other things” outside of the class and concentrate on the task at hand.
  • Speed– we are moving through things too quickly. We need to devote the time to each new piece before moving on. Don’t introduce new things with only a few minutes. Instead, give us the class time to work.
  • Collaboration– we need more small group work. Either discussion of concepts, what others are doing in class or bainstorming new ideas, this needs to be built in to each class session. Also, this doesn’t need to be done by department. This can be just as valuable having interdisciplinary time.

I wonder how these categories of reflection would pan out in our department.