Posted in Chromebooks, Google classroom, individualized learning, middle school science, NGSS, Project based learning, student engagement, Teaching

Where’s the passion?

I am naturally curious about the way things work. My children are naturally curious about the way things work. Most youngsters are naturally curious about the way things work, however, I don’t see many signs of this curiosity in most of my students.

I’m not sure why.

Maybe it’s just the age. They are 12-13 years old and their lives are changing so drastically. They are focused on themselves and where they fit in the social scene, where they rank in the games they play, who is the best or worst at soccer or getting the attention of the opposite sex.

Sometimes I think that maybe it’s me. Am I a boring teacher? Do I fail to be “with it”?

I am challenged to include videos and online activities in my lessons but all too often the students don’t’ get as enthusiastic as I expected about it all.

Could project based learning be an answer? I read and watch videos about other teachers doing things within the community, projects that seem to be meaningful to their students. But are these teachers having us look through rose-colored glasses and we only see the great things that are happening? I wonder…

How do I find the things that will turn my students on to science? This is what I am taking up as a challenge this summer as I prepare for next year.

I have been granted enough Chromebooks to have a near 1:1 ratio in my 2015-16 classroom. I am boning up on the NGSS in a class I will take through the local University and I will be taking several PD courses about using Google classroom and Chromebooks.

My vision is to have an interactive, hands-on, computer data crunching, student centered classroom that will come alive with budding science enthusiasts. Woah! Is that too idealistic or just optimistic?

We’ll see.

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Author:

I am a dual language (English is my L1, Spanish my L2) middle school science teacher, mom of five boys and one girl, wife of one wonderful man since 1991. We live in Forest Grove, Oregon and I teach in Hillsboro at South Meadows Middle School. I am an enthusiastic integrator of blended classroom learning, with aspirations to go as gradeless as possible, connect my students globally through blogging, and implement project based learning to maximize student engagement.

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