Hello, Summer! I have the best job in the world. And I can say this was my best year teaching, even with my weird little seventh graders. I love them, and they can't help being weird. They did not love me when they found I out was planning on making them work through at least part of the last week of school. One of the things I did with them was give them a chance to grade the novels that we read, and offer some suggestions to tweak projects and other assignments. They also had to tell me at least one thing they learned, which I really enjoyed reading. It was nice to remember why I do what I do at the end of a year. Here are some of my favorites. Spelling has been corrected, but in their own words:
I learned how to tell what the theme is.
I learned that any book is good if you get in depth with it.
I had no idea what mood was! Now I do!
I learned to make a correct paragraph.
I learned a lot of values that you need in life.
I learned the difference between an independent clause and a dependent clause.
I learned that Edgar Allan Poe was a poet. Also that the exposition was where most of the settings and stuff is.
Not every story has a weird twisted problem. Some can be peaceful.
Poets put their feelings and thoughts in their work.
I learned how to write using words like "said" from the past, "says" from the present, and "will say" in the future. Now I can write correctly using "tenses" or whatever.
I learned all about the 60s.
I learned how to do a plot diagram and what the parts of plot are.
I learned that it is possible to have glass stuck in your head. (I showed them the scars I have from my car accident as part of a lesson plan, and she remembered!)
I learned that people in different communities that have different lives don't always have to fight.
I learned who Bon Jovi is. My dad was stoked when I started listening to him.
I learned about Nelson Mandela and apartheid.
I learned that there are meanings of colors and symbolism.
One thing I learned is how hard kids in Africa have it.
I learned to put a comma or a semicolon in a sentence.
I learned how to be a better reader.
Now the trick is, will they remember it after summer brain drain? I can't wait to get started next August.