Tag: sbl

  • The Plan is Not to Plan

    The school year is off and running, and I couldn’t be happier with my new batch of scientists. They are an eager bunch with a lot of great skills, and I cannot wait to see where they go. One of the things I find most fun about being a teacher is having to adapt to […]

  • Creating a Culture

    Creating a Culture

    I often catch myself looking around my room and thinking, “This is awesome. This is exactly what it should be.” Granted, I don’t feel this way every day. There are definitely some rough patches and some whirlwind hours. The wonderful adolescents that I work with are bound to have a few not-so-wonderful days (both individually […]

  • The Struggle is Real

    My students are starting a project this week that I am incredibly excited about. It’s a physics project where they identify a real-world problem and design a solution to it. I’ve done if for the past for years, it is so unbelievably cool, and I cannot wait for them to get started.   Knowing this […]

  • Feedback FOR Learning

    My students are starting to wrap up their first project of the school year, which is to create a model of a food web.  They are doing some amazing work … and I couldn’t be happier with all they have accomplished so far.  At this point in the process, we start peer reviewing to get […]

  • Be Together. Not the Same.

    Ever looked at student work and thought it all looked the same? At some point last year, I remember flipping through something the students had worked on and thinking, “Man, that’s interesting. These are all the same thing”. I immediately went back and looked at the rubric. Of course it all looked the same, the rubric […]

  • Why Don’t Report Cards Look Like Social Media?

    Imagine it for a second.  What if report cards looked like Twitter?  Or Facebook?  Or Instagram? I’ve heard a few people toss this idea around recently.  At first, I couldn’t wrap my mind around it.  But the more I pondered the idea, the more it started to make sense. Think about it.  It could be really […]

  • Students Owning the Assessment Process Through Rubric Creation

    Ah, rubrics.  The favored tool for assessment by teachers.  Loved for their wonderful detail and their range of performance levels, rubrics are a great way to communicate expectations to students. Just like other teachers, I love a good rubric.  There’s just one problem … I’m really horrible at making them. I’m so horrible, in fact, that I’ve […]

  • Student Perspective on the Shift to Standards-Based Grading

    Last week, I had a very enlightening conversation with my students.  My district is transitioning to a standard-based report card next year, which includes the removal of letter grades from our system.  I have been using standards-based learning and grading in all of my sixth grade science classes throughout this current year, so my students are […]

  • What It Felt Like to Have a Blank Grade Book

    It was ten days until the end of the quarter, and my grade book still did not have a single grade in it.   The grades were coming, so I was starting to breathe a little easier, but still … eight weeks in and not a single published grade.   At the start of the […]