Mr. Kay's Blog

The day to day happenings of a 6th grade classroom teacher

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    Every week I take in how many pages each student has read. Below is the "Wall Of Fame", the top readers for the week, and "The 200+ Club", all the students who have read more than 200 pages in a week. Congratulations to all those mentioned!
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looking for the hook

Posted by willkay on September 18, 2012


Teaching maths is great, mainly because you get loads of “aaahhhhhhh” moments. In other subjects the “aaahhhhhh” moments can be few and far between. Let me tell you, no one ever goes “aaaahhhhhh” when you explain the difference between a vascular and a non-vascular plant. But maths lessons can be full of those moments – some days it can be like standing on Main Street at Disney, watching a fireworks display. Of course, the art of teaching is trying to get those “aaaahhhh” moments, those moments when everything clicks into place, everything becomes understandable, everything makes sense, and the student finally “gets it“.  And it is when your lesson is full of those moments that you know you’ve taught a good lesson. Of course, you can have a good lesson without those moments, but it is the most obvious moment that learning is “getting done“. Unfortunately, trying to capture those moments is like trying to capture lightening in a bottle. What works for one group of students, does not necessarily work for another group. And often, what works is never tangible. I talk to a lot of teachers, and eventually we all get round to telling a story about a lesson that was perfect – but the reason we tell the story, is we are hoping the other teachers will be able to point out what we did right. Often, I can have brilliant lessons, and I have no idea how or why – they just happen. However, the key to good teaching is experience. Everyone (EVERYONE) has one good lesson in them, most people have two or maybe three. What makes a teacher different to everyone is that they have 1000 good lessons a year. A teacher has the ability to teach one good lesson after another. A teacher can keep a group of children interested, excited, controlled, and awake lesson after lesson. That takes experience, an ability, and hard work. And so, it is with a heavy heart that I say, in all honesty, I had a really bad day today. Except, I admit this to the world with no regrets because, I did some real teaching today. It’s odd, because I don’t know how it happened, but I had a disaster of a maths lesson. It all seemed to go well, I taught the stuff, students answered question, on the surface it was successful. But when I saw the books at the end of the lesson, it was as if I had been speaking a foreign language.

I tried again in the English lesson. I thought I’d go slow, start with a spelling quiz which would settle me into my rhythm, but even a spelling quiz seemed beyond me. At that point I reached for my safety blanket – The Reading Logs.

THE WALL OF FAME

  • 770 pages: Andrea

  • 720 pages: Roberto

  • 555 pages: Raquel

  • 382 pages: Luis Francisco

  • 300 pages: Osvaldo

You see, somewhere, somehow, no matter how bad things seem, there is always a ray of light. SEVEN HUNDRED + PAGES! FIVE HUNDRED +PAGES! How cool is that? And along with these five students, seventeen (SEVENTEEN) other students read over 200 pages. WOW! Aren’t kids brilliant!

And that is the point. Even though I can have a bad day, the real art to teaching, is making sure that your students don’t have a bad day. So long as everything is working correctly, so long as everyone is doing what they are supposed to be doing, then even if one person is having a bad day, the rest of the class will carry them through. And there’s the hook! TEAMWORK. Thanks to teamwork, hardly anyone noticed how bad my day was going. Oh, there were a couple of blips and bumps and bruises, and there were a couple of times that students asked what was wrong, but in the end, everything turned out well.

Now, does anyone know how to pronounce Lieutenant? Listen carefully to what the Oxford Dictionary says here.

9 Responses to “looking for the hook”

  1. Hello now I can comment.HOORRAAYY!!!!!!!Although I’ll see if I can change my picture though 😀

  2. isabella reyes said

    i can’t still bealive roberto read 700 pages wow!!!!

  3. Roberto said

    I love Reading Logs
    p.s. I always get the same gravitar :l

  4. isa92000 said

    you need to show me how to ghange the pictur

  5. isa92000 said

    i just did it wooo

  6. Lizeth CM said

    how do you change the picture???

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