This is a big week in AP Sem--our first big essays are due on Monday! Students have been hard at work on their Individual Research Reports, and I’m excited to read the final drafts they’ll be sharing with me on Monday. Please ask them to share those with you this weekend!
We will spend Monday and Tuesday moving from the IRRs (Individual Research Reports) to TMPS (Team Multimedia Presentations). Students will work with their small groups to sift through the information they gathered individually and come up with a solution or answer to the question they posed at the beginning of their research. This is a challenging and messy process as they have to negotiate with their group members to create an argument that is cohesive rather than simply a summary of what each member researched. In addition to their argumentation and presentation skills, students are being assessed on their ability to work effectively in a group. I encourage you to chat about this process with your students; some work very naturally and easily in groups, but others struggle. Often, I find that strong students struggle the most because they are hesitant to trust their group members. This “soft” skill, though, is one that will be invaluable to them as they move on to college and their careers someday. The more we can practice it now, the better!
By the end of the week, students will have completed the presentations and will have access to their videotaped performances. We will watch them, reflect on their performance and reflect on the group process as a whole. Students will receive two scores for these assignments. One will be their holistic score on the 4 point scale they received with the assignment and will “count” toward their grade. The other score will be on the AP rubric that will be used to assess their work in April by the College Board. This score will not count this time, but I will urge students to use it as a way to zoom in on which skills they need to improve prior to their AP assessment.
Please encourage your students to work hard in class this week! They are always welcome to work outside of class on group projects, but that is very challenging with such involved students! They have lots of class time to work, and if they are managing their time wisely, they should be able to accomplish most of their work in class.
Last thing! I received an email from my daughter’s kindergarten teacher this week asking for various donations and supplies, and I added a few things to my shopping list instantly because I’m more than happy to do anything to make her life with 25 five year olds a little easier!! It occurred to me that perhaps some of you would have the same response! Please do not feel obligated, but if you’re willing, here are few things that would make our life in 266 a little easier:
--Books for our class library (I’ll take any donations! Books you’ve read and no longer want are always appreciated. Or, if you are like me and love to buy books, here is a list of books that have “disappeared” from my library over the years plus some new ones I’d love to share with kids: http://a.co/5cAcQaC)
Have a great weekend and Go Green!
Mrs. Hattie Maguire