Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Today in class, my plan is to... (my latest brilliant idea :))

So this year I've been struggling with my students using their time wisely and productively.  So, I decided about 7:15 on Tuesday morning to put something together which is now called the "Today in Class" form.

Students come in and get one every day.  At the beginning of the period, they check off what they PLAN on getting done that day with just a SLASH.  I give them guidance in terms of what "on target" students should get done.

We always start class with our WSQ chat activity, which takes about 10-15 minutes of class.  Then, they have 35-40 minutes left of "work time".  Without a plan, some students don't get much done and class can be very unfocused.  I needed to provide a little more structure for them without completely holding their hand and telling them exactly how to spend their time.

Throughout the period, as they work on their assignments, they make the SLASH into an "X" to show they actually completed it.  I can walk around and just glance at the student's sheet to see where they are at and how they are doing that day without needing to interrupt their work or discussions if needed.

At the end of the period they turn them in, and I just skim thru them (2 minutes or less) and see if any stand out to me as a student I need to talk with the next day (either they are way behind or they didn't get much done in class).

So far, we've done it for TWO DAYS.  And, this has been the most productive and focused two days EVER. Seriously.

This is the word doc version (see it here) so the formatting is a little off but you get the diea.

1 comment:

  1. This is a brilliant idea! I've also been trying to figure out how to have students use their class time more effectively. Some of my students are very good at this, but many aren't (especially my 9th graders) and I've been struggling with how to model/teach them how to improve their productivity. Your idea of having them spend a few moments actually planning and then having a physical record of what was accomplished seems perfect! Thanks for the idea (and I'll be curious to see if it continues to work well for you)!


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