Halls Of Fame

5/18/2006 08:30:00 am

Chris Harbeck teaches grade 8 math in one of our feeder schools. Normally, high school teachers don't really know or work with their feeder school colleagues on a regular basis. Chris has been working with me and my students almost daily. He's been commenting on our blogs and inducting students into The Scribe Post Hall Of Fame; his and mine.
Chris liked the idea of a Hall Of Fame so much that he has created The Growing Post Hall Of Fame. What's a Growing Post?

A Growing Post is a cumulative assignment that allows the students to have a review document of the unit they are taking. Students are given a set time period to complete their post. They are encouraged to include pictures and links as well as text to explain the questions being asked.
If a student is unable to complete their work online a paper version of the assignment is accepted.
Chris has posted what it is and how to orchestrate it with your classes. You should see what some of his kids can do with this idea. This one completely blew me away. (She's in grade 8! What will she be capable of in grade 12 ... and beyond?)
When Chris created the Growing Post Hall Of Fame he included a column called Reason for Induction. I liked this idea so much that I've just done the same in The Scribe Post Hall Of Fame. This is what's great about collaborating and sharing our ideas. Chris likes what I do, develops the idea further which pushes me and I learn from him. Rinse. Wash. Repeat.
In my recent podcast with Dean, he asked me "How do you get into the Hall Of Fame?" I didn't give a very clear answer. I'm still working out exactly what the criteria are for a post to be inducted. Looking at Chris' list of reasons for inducting students has started to give my thinking some focus. When all the posts listed have reasons I'll be able to articulate a better answer to Dean's question.
One of the things I'm struggling with now is the increasing volume of student scribes that are being inducted into the Hall Of Fame. Shouldn't induction be a rare occurrence? Shouldn't it require significant effort on the part of the inductee to be considered? But the students are doing increasingly excellent work, don't all students making this sort of effort deserve the recognition associated with being in the Hall Of Fame? Maybe we should just keep inducting the incredible work students are doing; generate a comprehensive list of outstanding work and follow up in June with The Scribe Post Awards. Maybe have a short voting period and give special awards to the top three (gold, silver and bronze badges). We'll let the students and their audiences do the voting. It's probably best if I stay out of it. I'm feeling less and less qualified to judge the work done at this level. How do you choose who is best when it's all so well done?
I'm feeling increased pressure to get some kind of badge for the Hall Of Famers. ;-)
(Audio comments are welcomed.)

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  1. I'm very interested in the relationship you have with those middle years teachers. There seems to be a general lack of communication and thus adds to the transitional problems for students entering high school. I always think of our global audience as being someone for some exotic or remote place. Building community and sharing with your neighbours has as much if not more benefits than sharing with those on the other side of the world.

  2. Anonymous18/5/06 13:01

    Thanks Chris, but the pleasure has been all mine. I have never learned as much as I have in the last year. The BPRIME group has been a significant part of that growth.

  3. Anonymous18/5/06 22:25

    Thanks Lani! Blogging has extended the instructional day. Maybe The Scribe Post Hall Of Fame will extend the intructional year; at least long enough to vote for The Scribe Post Awards. ;-)

    There's no question that The Scribe Post Hall Of Fame has become a catalyst for students to pour incredible amounts of energy into their learning. I've been a little taken aback by how enthusiastically they've pursued earning a spot in the Hall of Fame.

    The Pre-Cal 40S class had a run of 10 consecutive posts inducted. The Applied Math 40S class has had a string of the last three posts inducted and they're going for the record. This collusion of competition and collaboration, aside from paralleling the learning styles of boys and girls, has created something of a team spirit in my classes. I'm also feeling the pressure to perform each day so that they have the content to work with. This kind of pushmepullyou is drawing more effort out of all of us to learn hard.