Thursday, September 22, 2011

Best cool gadget for your desk!

Keep interesting gadgets on your desk and around your classroom and create a stimulating atmosphere to set the tone for learning!  I found this unusual fake butterfly in a jar this summer for my desk.  It's attached to a very thin wire which is battery-operated (the battery is under the lid to the jar).  The wire simulates incredibly realistic movements of a real butterfly caught in a jar.  Here it is:

Yesterday a few of my students noticed this, and before long I had a crowd gathered around my desk.  Several students wanted to know where I had bought it and how much it cost, because they wanted to buy one for their bedrooms.  But the best reward of all for me was seeing a group of football players hunched over the jar, saying "That's awesome!"  I'm glad I bought was worth it :).

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Fun in French IV!

The new school year has begun and I'm happy to share that the faculty at my school has noticed an unusually positive "buzz" going on.  It might have to do with the fact that we have a lot of new teachers this year, a new chaplain and also a new iPad2 program (everyone has one).  It seems like these things may have added to the usual excitement of the start of a new year.  Whatever the case, it's nice :).

I'm excited, too.  I absolutely LOVE the iPad2 and all the creative ways it can be used in my classroom.  Stay tuned for more on that...I plan to share ideas about how I'm using it as the year unfolds.  I'm also excited because I have a class of French IV this year, and I can't wait to see all that these students will accomplish. 

This week, French IV students were working on a project and they asked me if they could listen to some French music while working.  "Of course!" I said.  I stepped into the hall (for 5 seconds) to get some water needed for their project, and when I returned, this is what they were doing:

I stepped into the hall again (just for 5 seconds!) to get more water, and when I returned, this is what they were doing:

I was shocked that these girls knew the lyrics to this song since I'd only played it once or twice in previous years, and just as background music.  It makes me realize that playing background music can help them to learn French more than I thought! 

I'm sure you can see that these students were having a really good time, and learning, too.  Doesn't it look like a fun place to be?  I love my students.  I love my school.  I love my job. 

I hope you do, too.  Happy Back to School!

P.S.  The above videos were recorded on my iPad2!


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