Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Semester Goals to Avoid Senioritis

Yesterday in class, I asked the students our big semester question of "What's the point?" They reflected on this in class in my hope to keep the class focused especially during the final semester of their senior year. I wanted the class to understand that this class is different and that we do things differently. It is up to them to lead the class, focus the discussion, and complete the work. They need to create the point that will drive this semester and make them successful learners in life, not just in this one class.

Additionally, I asked them to create some goals for themselves, for their teachers as well as for the class in order to keep us focused on the point of this class. Here are their goals (individually, teacher, and class):

--To do the necessary behavior to earn the A: complete work on time, understand and be active in books read and papers written, become a more professional writer
--To find the point of our own lives by looking for the importance in miniscule things
--To have a professional attitude towards school and work
--To understand the message in the text instead of simply comprehending the plot
--Keep the work as the primary goal instead of life’s distractions
--To gain more knowledge than simply comprehending
--To become a more clear and concise writer
--To truly participate and be active during class
--To reach a different level by doing more than the average English class
--To increase work ethic
--To prepare for college writing by working hard now
--To work to the true highest potential
--To not only understand the text, but to develop a deeper interest
--To read in depth in order to write in depth
--To enjoy the class!
--To incorporate stronger vocabulary into writing and everyday usage
--To challenge myself to improve public speaking skills
--To permanently rid my writing of personal words
--To truly find myself in writing
--To live everyday to the fullest and think of others before myself
--To remember to bring donuts on my assigned days. This builds responsibility
--To live up to expectations
--To find a way to relive stress
--To not allow distractions of personal life to affect school work
--To become a more diversified writer by improving my ability to synthesize essays, analyze literature, and provide solid examples to back up opinion
--To look ahead and work for success in the future
--To work on organization of my thoughts

--To be available and supporting when asked for help
--To challenge the students to not settle for passing by asking for their best and giving them responsibility
--To make the transition between teachers smooth and by helping the students adjust
--To facilitate minds for discussion and to push the students to discover new ideas in literature
--To set HIGH standards
--To give us enough space to learn for ourselves and explore beyond the basic education provided
--To take an active interest in the students, their struggles, and their desires to improve
--To be open to branching out from the curriculum
--To provide an experience where the students leave with a personal connection to the text by fostering a closer individual reading between each person and the text
--To really connect with the students
--To check in during reading to confirm understanding of concepts
--To provide productive conference with feedback, guidance, and motivation
--To teach us to think in new ways
--To help us discover the underlying meaning of the text
--To provide a relaxed, yet productive, work environment
--To challenge us in ways that will not benefit the grade, but have long term lasting benefits
--To encouragingly point out our mistakes
--Give homework that is not only fun, but challenging
--For even weight on assignments so that one assignment won’t entirely affect the overall grade
--To stay balanced between being laid back and pushing the class to strive for our best
--To focus and eliminate busy work

--To stay engaged throughout the entirety of the semester and not succumb to Senioritis
--More group projects and deeper discussions
--To DESTROY our last fishbowl and top last semester’s fishbowls with a higher brilliance this semester
--Donuts EVERY Wednesday…let’s be responsible and not forget!
--For everyone to learn and grow together by establishing trust, respect, and courage to be ourselves
--For everyone to contribute insightful opinions in an engaging experience
--To be focused but still have fun when the time is appropriate
--For everyone to be prepared and not hinder others by their lack of preparation
--To challenge each other
--To provide variety and successful fun
--To be considerate and go with the flow
--To have a family atmosphere
--To give quality input on each others’ writing/blogging
--To know everyone’s names!
--To make our final projects AWESOME
--To come together by making everyone feel comfortable with giving their own ideas without being judged
--To live up to our expectation of having the best fishbowls in the history of fishbowls
--To have the ethic of a college class
--To know and care about each other
--To learn from each other
--To provide and environment where all of us continue to love coming to class
--To have fun and not judge each other
--To become more efficient at working together

My hope is that throughout the semester we will keep holding each other accountable to these goals, that they provide a nice structure and sounding board for where they want to go, and that most of all, that these goals point them in the right direction for the years to come.

1 comment:

Lauren L said...

Class goals:
-I hope we can all help eachother out.
-We should never forget wednesdays!
-Participate in fishbowls!
-Not lose self control because we are seniors!! ha
-Show Mr. Rugs how we gets down!

-Though we are responsible seniors we would like help once in a while!
-Do random fun things!
-Watch some good movies.
-Show Mr. Rugs a good arapahoe time!

-Stay on task in class
-Stay on top of HW and other readings/assignments.
-Ask for help
-Scribe and bring food on time!
-Become best friends with Mr. Rugs!