Lesson planning: project-based style

I think I can remember what classes I have tomorrow … oh dear, lol.

About an hour ago I tweeted about my need to stop blogging and to start writing lesson plans for my replacement teacher. This sparked a mini-conversation between me and @sthcrft

And you know what, it is worth a try … but to be honest I ended up writing my plans up in an email and not as a blog post. What I have decided to do is copy & paste them into a blog post because I think they give insight into how project-learning works in my classroom. Poor Kate my replacement teacher! (To help you understand what I’ve written, I’ve put in brackets notes for Kate – these don’t go on the whiteboard for students. I’ve put them in italics too!)

PD 1: Year 8
They have a quiz on MR RAP ASS O that I am just making now and will send it through soon! (ASIDE: I haven’t finished this yet, it will be done before the class starts at 8.30am, lolz)
Write this on the board:
TODAY’S LEARNING
– MR RAP ASS O quiz
– marking quiz
– class discussion about point-of-view [and link to The Highwayman: whose point of view is this narrative poem told from? (it is third-person, an omniscient narrator) Why is the poem called The Highwayman and not Bess or The Highwayman and Bess?]
– complete ‘L’ column for ‘investigation’ KWL [might need to have them reread their ‘investigation’ task on project outline, basically as a class or in a team have them identify what they learned during that task]
PD 6: Year 8
ON BOARD:
– poetry project product #1 discussion [read through Product #1 on the project outline – this is glued in their book]
– team completion of KWL chart for product #1 [each team tries to write at least 5 things they ‘know’ and 5 things they ‘want’ to know about the product and give them all a point for this – team with the most things added to chart gets 2 bonus dojo points – they read out their ‘knows’ and ‘wants’ and other teams tick them off or add them to their lists]
– (if time remaining) brainstorm ‘monologue’ [and copy a definition of ‘monologue’ off the board ‘Monologue: A speech or composition presenting the words or thoughts of a single character.’]
HW: decide which point of view their monologue will be written from – Bess or The Highwayman.

YEAR 9: Not sure what period you have these guys. Last lesson they read out their protest poems. They are also up to the second phase of their poetry project so just run through the same activity that Year 8 did – complete the ‘L’ for the first task and then complete a new KWL for the next product. If time left over give them the poetic devices quiz attached.
ON BOARD:
– complete ‘L’ column for ‘investigation’ KWL [might need to have them reread their ‘investigation’ task on project outline, basically as a class or in a team have them identify what they learned during that task]
– poetry project product #1 discussion [read through Product #2 on the project outline – this is glued in their book]
– team completion of KWL chart for product #1[same task Year 8 did]

YEAR 10: These guys are also on to the next part of the project.
ON BOARD:
– complete ‘L’ column for ‘individual task’ KWL
–  poetry project GROUP TASK discussion
– team completion of KWL chart for product #1 [same activity as Year 8 & 9]
– (if time) begin work on turning their cyborg poem into a digital visual poem (like the one by a student last year that they watched in class)

So that is all a bit mental – huh? I wonder if you can see how these lessons fit into the design of PBL. Basically the KWL charts are super important components of project-learning as they encourage students to ask questions and focus their inquiry so as to complete the project. KWL charts also teach planning and reflection skills – see that each class is required to reflect on the learning gained during the first part of the project? Because my classes have already completed the preliminary investigation and products for their poetry projects they are quite adept at this learning metalanguage. I think they’ll be fine without me. Can you also see where my learning spaces stuff fits in? Maybe not – basically when Kate writes ‘today’s learning’ on the board, she has the students identify the space/frame of mind required for each activity – cave, campfire, waterhole.

Anyway, it’s storming here and I better get off my laptop. Night!

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