Finding your focus

I’ve learned so much this year by teaching a new content, a new age groups developmental needs, wonderful new teammate, and a bunch of professional reading that it reminded me how important it is to have a focus. A focus helps me organize information better and filter what information I receive. My focus is on what I want for the students in my classroom. Ideas must live in practice – if I believe something I should be able to point to structures/strategies in my teaching that support them.

This is what I want for my students:

  • I want my students to learn the history I teach them, and to come away with a love of it or at least an appreciation of it.
  • I want them to learn how to become better at reading, writing, and thinking about history/nonfiction text.
  • I want them to learn how to communicate and collaborate productively and kindly.
  • I want them to learn about the tools to accomplish these things – technology, pen/paper strategies, and interpersonal. I want them to be able to choose the best tool for the job.

These are the lenses through which I make my instructional decisions: content, reading/determining importance/critical thinking, cooperative learning, and strategies/tools for making these happen both in Web 2.0 and Pencil.0.

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