Thursday, September 11, 2003

How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love My Job

Monday I spent all morning teaching two paired sets of freshman Humanities classes -- 30 kids each -- to present with PowerPoint. No, I don't teach software anymore; with each group we got a whole glorious hour to explore best practice, and think about the best ways to establish relationships between subject, slide show, audience, and presenter.

Tuesday I met with the Director of Health Education and planned out six days of media literacy into the brand new, thirty day, all-required 9th grade health curriculum. A whole day on critical viewing, a day on violence, and several days on body image and relatiosnhip protrayal, among other things; I can't wait to be asked to teach the class so the other course teachers can learn how to take on those csubjects themselves in subsequent terms.

Today I spent the morning teaching blogging to two smaller classes of ninth grade Algebra/Physics students -- not just how, but why. Blogger and enetation for comments; inserting pictures and manipulating font; journaling for math and science class and how it can support learning and idea-sharing. As an added bonus, Carlos, the new math teacher, got all excited about both standardizing blogging across all 9th grade math/sci classes, and even suggested having the course teachers keep a group blog, too, for parents and other outsiders to check in.

Heck, my primarily job function this year was to find the best technologies and the best place for them-- in bureaucraspeak, formalizing and institutionalizing the 9th grade academic technology curriculum and its delivery, including integration into our core freshman classes. Looks like I've got my trifecta: Blogs in Alg/Physics, PowerPoint with Fresman Humanities, and Media Literacy in the 9th grade Health curriculum -- and it's perfect. And, as a total bonus, each subject and tool, and the discussion we have in each class about what kind of communication each tool/subject makes possible and best supports, directly addresses the 9th grade program's fundamental focus (Who am I? What is my world? What is my place in it?) Now all I need is the documentation and case studies.

* * *

In other medialiteracy news, spent the afternoon teaching media literacy to this year's crop of Peer Educators. We started with a discussion of how our understanding of Sept. 11 is informed and flavored by the ways in which we experienced that horrible day and it's aftermath, used that discussion as a way to evoke the basic health and wellness issues -- body image, violence, substance use and abuse, popularity and social status, race, gender -- which Peer Eds might be able to support, and then walked them through a pretty standard 40 minute curriculum cobbled straight from last year's major course in media literacy, which centers around an old Rosie O'Donnel instructional tape called Taking Charge of Your TV" of the same title.

And to think I was worried that I'd be stuck at a desk all year.

posted by boyhowdy | 9:44 PM |

Post a Comment
coming soon
now listening