Thursday, April 09, 2009

"Mission Benches", oil, by Susan Cox

Teaching Journal
Day 121, Thursday, April 9, 2009

One of the genuine successes for me this year is the routine of note taking I’ve established. Strangely, in all the years of my teaching, I’ve paid little attention to that skill, and have never required the scholars to regularly take notes. However, this past summer I decided to make note taking a regular feature of English class – and it’s been a beneficial change. Each day at the start of class the scholars routinely open their notebooks and almost immediately begin taking notes, jotting down large and small items they think might be on the weekly Friday quiz. It’s become a habit, and a good one – something they customarily do just the way college scholars do. If visitors would stop in, they would see the children either writing in their notebooks or looking at me (in between gazing out the window at the early birds of spring). It’s an excellent routine – a new and worthwhile addition to 8th and 9th grade English.

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