OK GO! Slow Down… Fast Forward… Top Gear


It’s loud.  It’s full of energy.  It can seem chaotic if you don’t understand it.

That’s my grade 7 Language Arts Class.

It was this class that I chose to work with for my Cohort21 Action Plan.  My intentions were simple:  to encourage more boys to read and for them to engage in a novel study that was unlike the old, familiar beat-a-book-into-the-ground routine.  I added a few layers on:  a global connection (using WorldVuze) and an opportunity to use their work to give something positive to the wider world.  Then some classic LA bits were sprinkled in:  vocabulary building sessions, and Big Blog Thinking Questions.

The result was some inspiring work by a great group of boys.  Several of them were excited about the simple accomplishment of finishing a work of fiction.  Others went on to read sequels and trilogies.  All of them enjoyed the empowerment of choice and the flexing of their creativity.

I learned a lot through this process.  It was a challenge to provide enough time for the boys to accomplish their goals without losing their focus and energy.  It was also difficult to establish evaluation criteria that would honour the individuality that was the heart of each project.  We worked through these challenges collaboratively as a team, solving the problems together as they arose.

In order to share the final product (almost… the last bit isn’t quite done, yet!), I decided to push myself into some tech areas that I haven’t yet explored.  I used the Android App Framelapse to document the process and Movie Maker to pull it all together with help and consultation from students who have experience with them.  I enjoyed the process of producing a quick film about our Journey.

Link to Video:

Twitter:  @melissaeramon

Google:  [email protected]

My Teaching Philosophy:  Authenticity in learning opportunities is key at any age or stage.  True learning can only take place when inspired by genuine engagement and driven by a real purpose.  

1 thought on “OK GO! Slow Down… Fast Forward… Top Gear

  1. Melissa,

    I so love the format that you used to share your learning: what a fun and high-energy way to communicate your learning. Have you used this tool with your students before? I bet that they would really love it too!

    I’m impressed with your application of World Vuze. How did the students like connecting with readers far and wide? Did it change how they see themselves as readers? Did it change their ideas about what a “good book” is?

    So much learning. Thanks for your great sharing!

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