I have learned that the purpose of this program is create opportunities for our learners to achieve success! Believe me….. the tasks this week were frustrating (All the teachers have to do the activities and experience the frustration along with the students).
Our morning activity was a lesson on metacognition (how we process new information). The students did an exercise that allowed them to experience the metacognitive process (mull, connect, rehearse, express, assess, reflect, revisit and learn). I learned this exercise through working with Let Me Learn, an organization whose mission is to research and provide insights into the learning process.
In math and language arts, in addition to the allotted time on Success Maker, the students were presented with problem solving activities through the use of Tangrams. Our teachers assisted the students through the process as they experienced frustration with the task. All students eventually solved their Tangrams puzzles and were elated! This lesson integrated percentages, spatial sense, vocabulary, angles and revisited a variety of math concepts.
In the Problem Based Learning, we asked the students to reflect on three simple questions:
- What makes school hard for you?
- What would you do to show your teacher you learned something
- What activities do you like to do outside of school? How would you show a friend how to do that activity?
The discussion on learning was very interesting. The students were able to make connections about how they learn things naturally and how they are required to come out of that comfort zone in school. Next week will build on their learner-awareness and they will begin to formulate their ideas on how they can help close the achievement gap!
Our final activity was Silly Cup. We split into 4 teams and we had to flip a cup over so it was right side up. Of course our team won, but eventually every student completed the activity and they all got to keep their cup. The students and teachers were cheering each other on, and we ended the day on a very positive note.