I was blessed with the oppurtunity to mentor two classes, each with a different approach to technology in the classroom. Firstly, I was able to blog with Chris Harbeck’s class. They had a daily scribe who wrote about what happened that day as well as the assignments. It was really well done. It was apparent that a lot of thought went into most of the posts. The students used colour, links, diagrams, explanations, and anything else they could think of to explain what the concepts were and how to tackle the problems. Each scribe assigned another scribe for the following day. This was exciting because I got to see the progression in student work as well as what they were doing. I really enjoyed commenting on the blogs. I got to play “cheerleader” leaving little messages in each classroom saying positive comments like “I really liked when you did this, and I thought it was interesting how you explained that. Good work and I really enjoyed how you made use of this. I also thought that that was really well done.” I love being able to say things like that to people. I know how much it means to me when I get comments like that (especially when they have a criticism attached), so I want to give that joy to other students (minus the criticisms, of course). I found that I learned a lot about interesting assignments (who knew that poetry and math went so well together?) and how the progression of a class goes.
I think I was helpful because I encouraged students to be creative and think out side of the box. Having someone there soley to say good work and keep it up is important because it provides the students with someone besides their teacher and parents who read the blog and take time to actually reflect on what they were doing and saying. I feel like I was contributing to the class, which was a really good feeling to have.
Thank you so much, Mr. Harbeck. I really appreciated you letting me into your classrooms. Thank you to your students as well for being to so kind as to let me partake in your after hours classwork. I really appreciate it!
The other class that I got to mentor was Sophie Rosso’s class. They had a wiki. I found that it was cool to see how the class site was more kept up by Mrs. Rosso than the students, but it had lots of useful information for students. Had I been in her class, I would have found it great, but as a third party, I found it confusing and hard to use. I really didn’t know where I was supposed to comment, what to say, or how to say it. I didn’t want to start editting the wiki because I don’t want to mess up other people’s work. It scared me off a little bit because I found it really intimidating. I left a few posts, but nothing to in depth. I really found it difficult to connect to the students because everytime I went on, not a whole lot had changed, at least from what I could tell. The stuff that was on the wiki, however, was really good and I really liked reading and learning about what the class was learning.
It was great to see the different styles of the websites for each classroom. It helped me think about how I want to run my class blog in the future. I want it to be something that is easy to use for parents, students, other teachers, as well as anyone else who wants to look at it.
Thank you, Mrs. Rosso for letting me into your wiki. I really appreciate your generousity.
Outside of physically being in a technologically “advanced” classroom, this was the best experience I could have asked for. Seeing the development was very important and getting to participate was more that great. I really loved this project.
As for my self-assessed grade, I would say I think 7 or 8/10. I think that I did a pretty good job with Mr. Harbeck’s classroom, but I feel like I let down Mrs. Rosso. Thanks Dean for organizing such a great experience!