08/15/06

Cores 1-2 (8th graders):

  1. Reorient students to the new setup.
  2. Talk about the unique opportunity that Looping provides.
  3. Introduce FutureMe:
    1. First days are all about finding your footing again. You have been on the beautiful ocean of vacation for a couple months, and now it is time to step onto dry land again. As you get off of your well worn summer vessel,  your feet feel as though they are stepping through quicksand. Everything is shifting and swaying. Nothing seems real or easy. You were used to the rhythm of the waves, and it is going to take you a few days to lose that watery equilibrium.
    2. In order to help this process along, I wanted to start off by looking ahead. Sure, we could look back and say, “We had a pretty good year last year, I think I am just going to coast by on that for this year.” But resting on your laurels is not an option when you are given a much better alternative: making this year even better.
    3. I’ll admit, in some ways this year is a continuation of last year. You have most of the same teachers, and you are with most of the same students, but you are not the same person, and you won’t think the same way. So, acting like a 7th grade clone of yourself really isn’t a very good idea.
    4. To make sure that our eyes become open to one another for the first time, to make sure that we never become stagnant within ourselves, and to make sure that we don’t become jerks or inarticulate slobs, we are going to participate in FutureMe.
    5. FutureMe begins with looking at your future self. Who will you be at the end of 8th grade? Here is an example of what I am talking about.
    6. You then need to think about who you are right now. How are you going to get from the present me to the FutureMe? Another example.
    7. Once you have both of these things written down, you will be typing them into FutureMe.org. This is a web site that can send you an e-mail at anytime in the future that you want. I would like you to set it to send the end of the year (May 1st), so that you can compare who you thought you would be to who you actually became. When everyone receives their e-mail on the first of May, we will spend a class period laughing at how wonderfully right (and wrong) we were.
    8. Collect hard copies of FutureMe.

Core 3-4:

  1. Introduce concept of Write/Think/Draw/Discuss/Act-On:
    1. How do your perceptions of the people around you affect the way you act?
  2. Share out (with a partner) your perception words and images. Try and boil your how your partner does and does not want to be perceived into one essential statement.
  3. Introduce your partner to the class and share the boiled down statement about how they want to be perceived.
  4. What does it mean to make a promise to see each other better? How will it change your actions?
  5. Make the promise on the smart board.
  6. Introduce my classroom website.
  7. Explore the website and write down any questions about what you find there.

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