William Golding's Lord of the Flies is one of my favourite novels to teach. There are so many details that I pick up on each year, new things to learn and new perspectives on characters and places, that I am always excited to pick it up again for another class of students. Even after ten years of teaching the novel, I am still finding new information to flesh out the narrative.
Where were the boys heading when they were evacuated from the atomic-bomb devastated UK?
It is generally understood that the boys crash landed on their way to Australia. Most people believe that they landed on an island in the Pacific when, in fact, I believe they didn’t make it that far. Watch the video for my reasons why...
I'm a 21C teacher who embraces technology and sees value in communicating in ways "digital natives" do.
Case in point:
A student didn't show up for her test. I informed her that she had missed the test using a texting service called "Remind" which allows me to communicate with students and parents through their cell phones. You can set the service to be "text out only" or allow users to text you back. I find students and some parents are much more willing to ask for help through texts than in person or by email. Yes, there are inherent issues with training kids to NOT develop face-to-face social skills but their academic success and self-advocacy skills are heavily developed using digital communication methods.
She promptly texted me back, informing me that she is home sick and cannot write the test and has a doctor's appointment on the alternate test date. I sent her the test, which she can complete at home (it's skill based, not knowledge based) with instructions to her parents that she is to receive no help from anyone.
A traditional teacher would have either given up more of their own free time and lunch or after school to find a SECOND alternate test date OR given the student a mark of zero.
Is it perfect? No. Does it rely on some trust for the student? Yes. Is it a good workaround? Absolutely.
UPDATE (Nov 3/17): Educators should check their school board's policy. REMIND is banned in some boards.
I wear many hats and take on too much but I love every moment of being creatively busy. I also form opinions on a wide range of topics but social justice and fairness are strong themes that vein my narrative. Here is a collection of my thoughts, rants, ideas, musings, and writings.