This summer I’ve been following the Stenhouse Summer Blogstitute.  I participated in the Blogstitute last summer, as well, and this year’s looks to be just as informative!

Last week’s post by Debbie Miller was about her idea of 1/3, 2/3 balance.  In classrooms where such a balance is upheld, 1/3 of the time would be the teaching time and 2/3 of the time would be student work time.  I really like the idea that when planning for such a balance teachers would first identify the learning target, then plan for what the students would be doing during the work time, and lastly plan for the instruction and resources.  So the emphasis for planning becomes what the students will read, write, or talk about and how they will be engaged and demonstrate their learning and the teaching done is to support that emphasis.  As a teacher in the library media center a 1/3, 2/3 balance would mean that my instruction would be 15 minutes and the student work time would be 30 minutes.  Such time management and planning will require a few shifts how I have been working with students in the library, but I think these shifts will support the goals I have for my students in the coming year.

This week’s post by Erik Palmer included his idea that we should be encouraging students to practice their oral presentations and provide feedback, much like we do with their written rough drafts.  He suggested several ways that students could record their presentations for practice, including using Photobooth on Mac computers.  Quicktime is also an application that students could use to record either audio or video of themselves to rehearse oral presentations.  Palmer suggests that students turn in their recordings or share them with students to get feedback before the final presentation.  Students can also evaluate themselves as they listen to their recording.  I like the idea of collaborating with a classroom teacher on just this part of a class presentation assignment in the media center and I think teaching students, especially those in the upper grades, to use the recording software early in the year will be beneficial.