Monday, October 1, 2007

Reading Blog Was Due Today!

The Room 42 Reading Blog, our ongoing reading project for the year was due today. Technically it was due yesterday but I accepted anything as long as it was posted before I got to school today. We have gone over this project extensively in class. I have modeled how to do it, we have practiced, and the kids have worked on their assignment. I think some of the grades were a shock today. Many were low. We had one A, and a lot of Bs. After that, the grades dropped off pretty significantly. There were two main reasons. The first was that the project was not done. This isn’t like other assignments where they have time to get things done after the due date. The kids have an entire month to work on this so it is completely due on the due date. Also, if I let them go over the deadline, that puts them behind for next month. The second reason was direction following (also something we talked about today). The kids have an evaluation form that tells them exactly what is expected. They know how to use it, it is just a matter of them actually looking at it before they submit something to the blog. There were a ton of kids who lost points because they forgot to put citation/bibliography information on their post, or forgot that they needed to list the genre, or they needed to tell what they liked or didn’t like about the book. We again went over it in class today and my hope is that we are all on the same page about what is expected. I know that it will take a while to completely get into the swing of it but already the conversations that are going on about books are awesome.

I also wanted to mention a new section I added to the Reading Blog. The Big Read is a program where communities around the country read the same book. The book for the KC area is A Farewell to Arms by Earnest Hemmingway. I have never read anything by him but I got a copy for myself and one for my brother so we will be participating. Anyone else that would like to participate is welcome to grab a copy and post your thoughts on the Room 42 Reading Blog.

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