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Showing posts from October, 2007

Not a good day

Today I had two more team members quit - one of them was a captain. This has become an exercise in frustration. At this point, both myself and the assistant coach are ready to just throw in the towel. We're in the middle of choreographing our competition routine and this just isn't the slap in the face anyone needed.

My favorite student was expelled for fighting. I've been working with this kid for a a long time and we're so close to getting to an easy graduation. In fact, we were just talking this morning about being all caught up on credits and only a year left... I hope this doesn't lead to downturn. It's so easy for that to happen.

A personal goal has been set back - again. Some days, I feel like a salmon trying to swim upstream... only to discover a damn.

My Development Goal

for this school year ->

My area of focus will be to develop a variety of assessment methods that allow students to develop portfolios of work to demonstrate growth in reading and writing. Students will be able to clearly see the improvement in their reading and writing skills by examining a portfolio of assignments. Students will be able to lead the assessment of their own work and reflect upon skill gains and self-determine needed areas of improvement.

Navigation 101 and Student Responsibility

This week we started the Navigation 101 program. Sadly, I think, we didn't get a lot of lead up to this - mostly the lead up consisted of "go look at the website." The first class was on Thursday. We didn't get the first lesson plan until Wed. (we aren't going by the website schedule) and it was pretty skimpy. We were start off with an ice breaker, and then move into checking transcripts. Except that I'm really bad at ice breakers and I don't know how the occupational/arts classes break down. Yeah. I told several kids to talk to their counselor the next day. Then the students asked what all the other things on their checklists were and I had to say "we'll get to them another day" because I don't really know what they are really about - I mean, I guess the portfolio shows work the student has done, but what kind and what is going to happen to it, I don't know. It's not that I think the program is a waste of time or not helpful for…

A Good Read

A new book has been making the rounds of the high school and I know it's making the rounds in others. A friend who teaches in another city told me that she read the entire series in a weekend! Ok, so they're not real deep or complex, but highly adictive to teen-age girls.

Twilight by Stephanie Meyer. It's actually the first book in a series of three (and continuing), so once the reader is hooked, there's even more to keep them reading. It's got vampires, romance and high school.. what could be better? Oh yeah. It's set on the Olympic Pennisula, so the kids get a little thrill every time they read the name of a town they've heard of or been to. In fact, it is set in Forks, WA. Why Forks? Because as the rainiest town in the US, it's a perfect place for a vampire who doesn't want to be in the sun. Heh. Personally, I didn't find Forks all that much rainier than anywhere else on the pennisula, but the kids told me that the author never actually visit…

And now for something completely different...

As it is October, we are now in the midst of examining goals set in September, the School Improvement Plan and a whole host of other documents that largely make everyone feel like they're doing something. For the first time, we got some actual statistics - these are usually horded by one staff member. Unfortunately, they didn't really tell us much more than each grade level class has different issues. Big shock. So, we wrote up a plan to get past scores of the students actually in our courses, instead of the ones who've moved on. It's a revolutionary idea, but it just might result in better results. Next week we're also starting Navigation 101. We're not getting a lot of prep for it - the lesson plan for the day will be given to us the morning before. Lack of planning makes teacher nervous and it's becoming a recurrent theme. According the website, the first lesson is become aquainted (insert ice breaker game here) and then create the high school portfolio.…