Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Day 40- New York City Center and Ethan*

This was another one of those days where it was a bit more challenging to make a connection to what I wrote about last year.  I appreciated the simple pleasure of painted toenails a year ago today, so I figured some sort of foot connection would be the way to go. 

I made the connection through the New York City Center.  I figured in order to make other people take joy in their feet, it might be nice to donate to some kind of dance program.  I donated specifically to their education programs.  Here's what they do:

Each season, artists who perform on City Center's stage help bring dance and musical theater education into the classroom for more than 5,000 public school students throughout all five boroughs of New York City.


http://www.nycitycenter.org/

I hope this makes for some happy feet :).

******
I gave a reading quiz yesterday that was challenging.  I asked students to answer high depth of knowledge questions by analyzing a quote from the book (their pick from three possible choices) and explaning its importance to one of the major themes.  As I expected, the results on this were mixed.  I knew that this would not be easy for all of them, but I still wanted to give it a try.  It wasn't worth a whole lot of points, and they have a major project due next week, so it was pretty low stakes as far as the actual grade went.  I really just wanted to push my students to think and connect and practice the kinds of skills that will make them successful next year in high school.

Although many kids did a nice job, I had less than a handful of perfect or near perfect scores.  One of these was Ethan.  He is an extremely bright underachiever who is easily bored unless presented with something as challenging as yesterday's quiz.  Even then, his amount of effort sometimes seems to depend on the day.  With his response on the quiz, he totally knocked my socks off.  Not only was his answer well-reasoned, complete, and insightful, he also included his own experiences and made a text to self connection without even being asked.  It was such a refreshing departure from some of the other papers I sighed through when I was grading his class tonight.

He even got a smiley face next to his score.  That's hard to earn from me on an assignment like this, especially when his was near paper #75 tonight.  I hope this makes his face smiley too!

Thank you, Ethan, you made my day.




 

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