The Sort-of-Scientific Method

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Dec 13 2012

More Than On Task

Day 66: Yesterday, I wrote about how excited my kids got when I announced that we were starting life science. Well, apparently, my kids were saving the best for last.

Today, I taught the introduction to life science class for the fourth and final time. This final class asked by far the most questions. When will Boston be underwater because of global warming? What is cancer? Is a sea anemone alive? What is a neuron? Kids I’d seen melt into their desks a week earlier were alert, engaged and curious.

The best came at the end of class. The principal was walking through at the end of class, and one of my students – one I consistently fight with to stop reading during class – grabbed her and said, “This unit is the BEST.” Another student immediately ran up to her and said, “You HAVE to read this!” and handed her the story we’d been reading about Substituted Sammy, so we could discuss what it meant to be alive.

Often, it’s enough when kids are on task and learning. That’s the goal of school, not how much fun they’re having. So it’s a fortunate and very happy day when kids are on task and learning, but also legitimately excited. Being excited in front of my boss doesn’t hurt either.

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Experimental Procedures of a Second-Year Teacher

Greater Boston
Middle School

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