Back to school

Back to school for the last term of the year, and the second day of Daylight Saving – not a great way to come back, but we survived.

Maria started by asking what the boys did during the holidays – I always find that serves a dual purpose: beginning gently by talking about the students, and also showing them that she’s interested in them, and sharing stories amongst the students. Some students were fortunate to be able to go overseas in the two-week break – one travelled to Thailand and another to Africa.

I explained to the boys what I’d uploaded to the ning during the break. Firstly, the screen shots of the film, School of rock, which they’ll be studying soon, along with questions to spark thinking and analysis of the film.

Zack’s father has strong views on playing the electric guitar. What are they? What impressions do you get of the relationship Zack has with his dad?

Trivia: The finger point and nod that Jack Black teaches Zack is actually a move that Angus Young of AC/DC performs in concerts.

Each screen shot has a comment box so that students can write their answers, and these can all be viewed together, as well as further commented. It really works so well, so much better as a collection of responses visible to everyone, and enabling further discussion, than the usual collection by the teacher of separate responses with no further response from the class.

Next we toured the fiction blog, looking at reading possibilities, checking out author websites and trailers. We looked at Anthem of a reluctant prophet by Joanne Proulx. The book has its own, attractive website, Stokum Sucks.

The boys were impressed that the book came with a playlist (I think). We also looked at a post entitled If you like this, then you’ll love that, with ideas for similar series or genre.  Then we scrolled and skimmed, reminding the boys to check the blog regularly for reading ideas. During lunch the boys met Maria and me in the library so we could help them choose books.

And that was that. First day of fourth term. I think we’re going to have a good one.

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