Friday, November 21, 2008

Back from the Land of the Notables

Thought I better do something on this blog to satisfy expectations. I've just been informed that a wiki has been created by the OZNZ crew
and my blog address has been included as an example of a teacher's blog. Woops - haven't added anything for ages and much of what I post up here is more personal than related to my teaching activities.So,I now feel somewhat conscience bound to add something that other teachers might find useful.So here goes...

I have just emerged from a reasonably stressful time coordinating a big yr9 project that our school has run for the last 8 years or so called The Night of the Notables. This involves students choosing a notable person who has contributed in a worthwhile way to society.They extensively research that person, developing timelines, posters, artifacts, open ended questions, U-lead presentations etc etc. They have about 4 weeks to complete this research and then comes THE NIGHT when they set up their display stations on a table and pinboard. They dress up in costume as their designated notable person and - if they're really good actors and researchers, actually "become" that person for the duration of the presentation (one hour). My friend and colleague and Web Guru, Sue Tapp discovered this program (from another school) and introduced it to our school. She ran it singlehandedly for 6 years and then 2 years ago it was handed over to me. I had just weezled my way out of coordinating English which I had done for 13 years.As part of my "Expert" teacher status, this was my new duty (actually I seem to have a few "duties") Last year's Notables was relatively easy to coordinate with 9 Yr9 classes and the presentation at school. This year we had 11 yr9 classes (80 students over 3 nights) and the presentation was run off site because of a school building program. We were lucky to have access to a big space at a close by Baptist church whose pastor and community were delighted to help and were wonderful hosts.The whole event was overall very successful and was the result of many helpers and supporters. As coordinator I was extremely busy and frequently stressed but am pleased with the end result. Needless to say, I am very relieved it is now over and I can concentrate on exam marking and report writing as well as entertaining my junior classses for the remainder of the government school year.
This activity does involve researching on the internet and producing a digital image display to music - so 21st Century technologies are involved.

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