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Hello school year!

Posted by phourigan on September 10, 2010

It’s really fantastic to be back, and one reason I’m so excited about this school year is my CEC class – I’m finally going to have my own environment where I can start putting into practice all of the skills and techniques that I’ve been trying to get others to do for years.

I’ve had two sections of CEC so far and it’s going to be very interesting.  These 8th grade boys are not used to having to solve problems for themselves, and for some of them it will take quite some time to reprogram their brains so that they don’t instinctively ask me for answers first.

The class will consist of a series of challenges, and here’s the first challenge:

I want you to blog.  I can’t decide what platform to use, so I’m asking you to help.

In your small group:
1. Research and select a blogging platform
2. Prepare a presentation that illustrates why we should choose your recommended platform over other platforms
3. Be ready to answer questions
4. Compose your thoughts in the online journal below
5. Download (using the link below), complete (using your brain) and submit (using the digital drop box below) the self-assessment worksheet

Items 4 & 5 reference three links in Moodle to resource materials – a journal page, a link to a Word document and a digital drop box for collecting work.

Most of the boys seem very excited to get started, but it’s interesting how many of them jumped immediately to PowerPoint – it’s like Pavlov’s dog.  They hear “Presentation” and instantly think that PowerPoint is the best (correction: only) medium.  I shall soon dispel them of that notion unless it’s really really good.

But the best part so far was when a student who has not yet even had the class came up to me and asked, “I was looking on Moodle at the challenge and was wondering if I could get started over the weekend.”

I asked, “What do you think I’m going to say?”

“Probably no,” he said with a sheepish grin.

“Now hang on a second,” I replied, “Let’s switch roles.  You’re the teacher and you were just approached by a student who was so eager to start a project that he asked if he could start it early – and on the weekend, no less!”

He smiled and said, “In that case, I guess the answer would be yes!”

Yeah.

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