Sustaining Momentum Redux (Alternate Title: Decisions, Decisions)

Wow. It’s May 5th, and I haven’t put up a blog post since April 25th. And ironically enough, that post was about sustaining momentum. I can see now that I really didn’t sustain any momentum. At all.

But I have excuses. And lots of them. Of course, that reminds me of my 7th grade shop teacher’s saying about excuses. “Excuses are like armpits. Everybody’s got a couple and they both stink.” So what have I done since the 25th of April?

  • Mentored two 5th grade students for their PYP Project, including an afternoon at their presentations.
  • Guest-lectured in a 4th grade class about SCUBA diving as a passion and how it can lead to action (similar to the PYP Project they’ll complete next year…wonderful timing I didn’t plan).
  • Spent three days in the Danube Delta with the science department trying to find a new place for our Group IV project for our seniors next year. (Two of the three days were a weekend.)
  • Spent another day working with the science department on our curriculum. Exhausting work, but oh so necessary and helpful. I wish we could spend a whole week together. Without having to lesson plan for being gone.
  • Spent an entire day getting trained on our new student information system. (For which I’ll be the coordinator next year.)
  • Given up planning time for more training on the SIS for next year.

Oh, and I tried to teach, all while lesson planning for two days of being absent. Yikes! Now I have a huge number of tests and labs to grade. Which I should be doing right now, instead of writing to my blog. Who says procrastination is only for students?

But there is a point to all of this. If you’ve read some of my other posts, I’ve mentioned that I am going to pilot a flipped class model this spring for a unit. I’ve decided to flip the unit on Equilibrium for my DP students. I have a small mixed class of Standard Level and Higher Level students, so this will be an interesting experiment in differentiation. I have about a week and a half before I get to start the flipped class, so I’ve got some time to do more planning. I feel this is critical, as I need to make sure I do it right the first time so that I can evaluate my pilot. I’m also contemplating a small flipped unit with my Pre-DP grade 10 students, to give them a taste of what next year will be like. Wait, did I say ‘…WILL be like’? I meant to say, “..what next year MIGHT be like.” Next year I have two separate classes, one SL and one HL. So I won’t need to do as much differentiation. But I really think flipping the class might give the HL students the extra detail they need to be successful on Paper 2.

So there you have it. I’ve rambled on enough and need to get to marking.

Cheers.
Lowell

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