We’re drawing to the end of the quarter and there is anxiety everywhere. I’ve tried to minimize the stress as much as I can, but when people care about their work, there will definitely be some moments.
Today, after looking at Eric Foner’s review of Annette Gordon-Reed’s work in the NYT, we played a game of “What’s Clapper worried about ?” I listed the three things that I’ve been seeing and asked them whether I should be worried.
“I’m worried that students aren’t taking notes on their sources.”
“I’m worried that students are writing on the fly, i.e., writing before they’ve gathered all their research.”
“I’m worried that some students are missing context; that they’re missing the forest for the trees.”
(I followed the conversation with a google form for kids to share back what they’re feeling good about and what they need help with…)
It was a rich discussion with many solid ideas…It’s always helpful when the students point at requirements and rubrics instead of the teacher. I think everyone felt better, including me. At least until someone said,
“You’re so old, you shouldn’t be worried about anything.”