Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Open House: Today's Slice of Life

The Slice of Life Story Challenge is hosted by Two Writing Teachers.
Find details here or visit today's link list for a second helping. 

Open House is a whirlwind of class changes, video messages and handshakes. It is smiles at the door and first names and meeting parents, sometimes for the second time. Our high school Open House ran from six to eight  this evening. 

We began with an announcement from our new principal via the public address system. Then we all watched two videos, one on Common Core Standards and the second a short welcome message from our school board representative, Rick Roach. I appreciated that Roach displayed his email address and phone number for parents. I admire the work he has done in our community and the effort he makes to communicate with and support those he represents. Marion Brady's story about him taking a version of our state's standardized test went viral after being published by the Washington Post in 2011. You can read Brady's piece here or Valerie Strauss's follow up which reveals Roach's identity here.

After the virtual welcome messages teachers had time to talk to parents. Parents get ten minutes in each of their child's seven class periods. They have five minutes or so to travel between classes. 

I spent my ten minutes praising children and showing parents where they can find information about our classes online. We toured our class webpage and peeked into the school portal so that parents could 
see where I am posting homework weekly. We visited a student's narrative essay recently shared via  Google Drive and listened in to a snippet of feedback I'd recorded using see Kaizena

Sarah's narrative essay, pictured here from my Kaizena work space is
an object story mentored by Simon Rich's New Yorker piece, "
I wanted to sit the parents in our Socratic circle, have a discussion, talk balance and learning. I wanted to ask parents to write their children a note I could tuck into their journals tomorrow. I wanted to have parents turn and talk to each other about their children and the joys and challenges of sophomore year. I want to poll, to survey,  to elicit. 

I likely talked too much.
 Ten minutes flies when you have so much to share. 

1 comment:

  1. We actually did the note piece at Lake George. I think it was cool. Glad you had a night with them. I keep thinking about how at ORHS we had ninth grade parents come to school and follow the schedule for a day. Good turnout!