As we wind down the 2012-2013 school year, I’m trying not to get bogged down by all the minutia of the end of a school year. I’m trying to get things ordered in my classroom so that the beginning of next year isn’t so bad. People are beginning to pull me to various training and meetings that are great, but tend to distract me from what is going on in my classroom. On top of all that I just came back from my paternity leave and that has also thrown me for a loop. All that being said, I really would like to use a couple of days at the end of the year to reflect on the year that was and what we have learned as a class.
It’s been a tradition of mine in the classroom to get feedback from the kids about what they liked and disliked about my classroom. I try my best to both formally and informally collect data about things that have been successful as well as things that I for sure need to work on for next year. I’ve done this in a number of ways in the past from simple conversations, to videos about “what to expect in Mr. Horner’s class,” and even Google forms that the kids can individually fill out for me. This year I know for sure that I want to collect this data and I’m not sure which method I’m going to use. I may incorporate Edmodo so that the kids can feel confident that I won’t be sharing any of their responses with their classmates (not like I ever do).
It’s also important for the kids to reflect on their year in social studies. I want them to reflect on the things that they’ve learned and the concepts that they will carry with them forever. I also want them to reflect on the way they best have learned material this year because in our district we ask the kids to self-diagnose themselves and the ways they best learn. Some kids do really well with technology in their hands where others thrive with less technology. I don’t want them to definitively paint themselves in a corner, but I would like them to start the process of understanding how they best learn.
Hopefully using all the data above I can help refine my content and my craft to be better next year than I was this year. I also hope my kids better understand themselves and the world in which they live and are better prepared to interact with their world. I guess that’s every teachers goal…right?