Monday, August 13, 2007

I'm Listening...

Guess what? You are seniors! Because you are so learned in your ways and I can't teach you anything you don't already know ( I am being facetious- look up this word if you don't know what it means), I want you to think about what you want your last year of high school to look like. THINK BIG!

What do you hope to get out of this class?
What do you want to learn?
What do grades mean to you?How do you learn best?
What activities have you previously done in other classes that have been meaningful or interesting to you?

27 comments:

karmk said...

For this class, I want to make the best of it since it is may last year and all. But i also want to majorly improve on my writing skills because i definately lack in that area. I want to learn how to get ready for college and the real world and expand my knowledge in english ( the knowledge i have!)and interact with everyone around and hope to make a good impact. Grades!! well i don't like them at all and don't think they are fair. You should be graded on more of what you actually know not what you write on paper you copy of someone else. over all it should't even be about grades. for me i like doing a lot of activities becasue i am a visual learner and it is also a lot of fun!!! but i don't like fish bowls

Samantha E said...

In this class I hope to improve my level of writing in this class. And learn the techniques to do that. To me, and my parents, grades mean a great deal, they mean that I have either achieved a great deal in a class or not. I learn best when what we are learning is applied to something that I know in modern life, when I feel like I will actually use it. In an English class I studied fashion and sense that is something that I enjoy outside of school it was something that I put my heart into in class. That is another way that I learn, if what is being studied is meaningful to me.

sook said...

From this class I hope to improve my writing skills for college. I want to learn what the expectations are for college writing and how to impress the university I am applying for. I also want to learn more about our final question , "What is a hero?". Grades are something important to me because doing well in academics can decide my future. I learn best with groups and asking questions about what I did not understand about the assignment. In other classes, I like activities that are different, and have never been done before. I tend to learn better when new concepts are introduced instead of doing the same activities that I did before. I like variety in my learning, so that could be the reason why I do not enjoy fishbowls. But if we had to do fishbowls, I don't think being graded on how much we talk is a good idea because it puts more pressure on the people to speak. I think it would be alot more casual and people would talk more if they weren't graded.

brooksk said...

At the conclusion of last year's American Literature section taught with the rigor and focused repetition of Mrs. Paswaters, my writing skills had been fine tuned to what is now one of my greatest abilities, skills, and loves of life. Not only had my ability to run sentences flowingly along together in the creation of college-level writing tremendously excel, but my ability to analyze text improved by leaps and bounds. But as Mortimer Adler states: "The purpose of learning is growth, and our minds, unlike our bodies, can continue growing as long as we live." So through this "college-prep" class, I mostly desire to learn skills which I can utilize in college reading to improve efficiency and time-management/speed while maintaining the analytical and writing skills of the literature already present. I hope to learn greater study methods for college english including helpful study habits for literature and class discussions, but also the fine tuning of editing my own writing.
I learn best through practice! Whether its practicing writing or analyzing text, adequate practice is the best tool for me to learn!
I think that grades shouldn't impact one's learning in a significant matter because in a well-structured class instructed by a veteran teacher (like this class), the true grade will be portrayed through the student's inputed effort, ability to make improvement, time commitment and overall success on assigned tasks. Students must remember this work is not to get the grade or to impress teachers and parents, but for our own benefit and the work we do is for ourselves as students of high school in preparation for future college as well as life.

Jackie.d said...

The fact that I am a senior, and that this is my last year of public education is quite unnerving for me, and the idea of starting college a year from now is even more frightening. So, what I would like most to get from this class is preparation for what is to come in the much too near future, which should be expected considering this is a college-prep course. I want to leave high school with the state of mind that I can do anything if I put my mind to it, and I think that this class can do that for me. When Mrs. Smith mentioned in class that we would be teaching ourselves a whole unit second semester, it worried me, but also made me want to challenge myself to be confident that when we undertake that unit we can be successful in taking charge of our learning. In this class I want to learn how to be responsible with my own learning. Our college professor's will not be guiding us every step of the way and getting to know each and every one of their students; therefore, we have to be responsible for ourselves and what we obtain from the education we will soon be paying lots of money for. I agree with Brooks's comment when he said that grades shouldn't impact someone's learning, or concern them very much, because in a well-instructed class the grade will reflect what a student actually learned when the grade is portrayed through their effort, improvement, commitment, and success in that particular class. I believe that a student must want to learn for their own benefit, and have the mindset that they are learning for their own future. The student's motivation cannot be for extra money from their parents, or respect from teachers, but for success in life.

michaelm said...

In this class, English Literature, I hope to excel in my writing abilities. I am excited to write our college essays because having it as a class assignment will make me do it, and I will have help from peers and Mrs. Smith.
Grades are important to me for the most part. I don’t believe grades should be the description of me as a student, but I do believe they say a lot. I learn the best visually I think, or when the class is involved in a project or discussion. A sense of humor is important and lively teachers, (like Mrs. Smith) rather than monotone boring ones. I don’t like fishbowls, but I know they work because the class teaches the class. Also I like when we do projects or play games that teach the lesson, because that type of learning sticks better, when you’re having fun. I’m looking forward to this class this semester because it should be fun!
One question though: what does ‘facetious’ mean?

mattw said...

Lets see...I definetly need to improve on my writing cause that was the area that I scored the lowest in on the ACT and SAT. So i obviously need improvment in those areas. I really want this class to be the greatest english class ever, since it's my last one in high school. Slightly depressing, but I'll get over it. As for grades, I don't really like the way that they're done cause it seems like we're graded majorly on wrote memorization, which isn't an actual measurment of how much you've learned. It just simly says that you can cram the hour before a test and remember enough to get a decent grade. But, being as that doesn't seem to be changing any time soon, I suppose grades are important for college (understatement) so I hope that I can pull off an A in this class. I just hope that this class is as fun, if not more fun, than all the other english classes that I have taken.

iains said...

This class will hopefully help me improve my writing skills, because in the past those have been a little weak. I also want to prepare for college. Grades are not as important to me as the knowledge I recieve from a class. In past classes i have learned the most from group activities, like fishbowls.

Sean N said...

Writing papers is definitely going to be a lot harder in college than in high school. That’s what I want to be prepared for. By this point we should know our stuff when it comes to writing. What we need to do now is refine our skills in preparation for college level essays

stidwell said...
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StevenD said...
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stidwell said...
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StevenD said...

When I entered the classroom I still had the same mindset about your class that I did freshman year. I didn’t even really realize that I was a senior until you drilled into our heads and implanted the fact that English Literature is a college prep class. I honestly, by the end of the year, want to leave the class with knowledge that I will carry with me beyond college and into my distant future. I would like to leave this class with confidence and be comfortable with the material and everything I have learned. I believe that my grades represent the respect, time, and effort I put into my learning and my future. I want to look back and be proud of the grades I received and the effort that I put into my high school career. But learning something can be a very long and time consuming process, and I will admit that I tend to drift off in my own world sometimes and start to draw, but I am mainly paying attention. This year is going to be different though! I am going to work as hard as possible and put in as much time into learning as the teacher does into teaching. I like to believe that I learn best in an interactive environment where I can get my hands dirty and really get into the lesson. I hope that this class is as rewarding and fulfilling as you promise. Go class of 2008!

P.S.
Mrs. Smith,
You RULE!!!!!!!

also...Sam says hi!

stidwell said...

Out of all honesty, I’m still processing that we are seniors with only one year left until college. Anyway, I am working towards making this a strong year and graduate knowing I did all I could to do my best. I’m actually pretty excited for this class because I had a blast last year in American Literature with Mrs. Comp, and that was the first year I ever enjoyed my English class. I’m anxious to see what happens this year in this class because I absolutely love the way all of you teachers are beginning to teach. The new teaching style has helped me phenomenally. I am more of a hands on learner and don’t do well with lecture or boring things that don’t get me interested. I do understand that there will be things I won’t enjoy, but if I’m given a chance to make it feel like more than just work and something I want to do, then I’m all for it. Honestly, I hate grades; I think it is full of bologna because I don’t believe that a grade can estimate how well I am actually doing in the class. I have had classes that I have thoroughly enjoyed but received a bad grade, and that just doesn’t make sense to me. I think a grade should reflect something other than how well you complete your homework. Like I said before, the things we did last year in American Literature I can honestly say that I enjoyed it and had the feeling to want to continue. I never felt burnt out in the class or felt like it was never going to end. I can’t point out certain things we did, but they were things that gave us control of our learning and that in turn caused us to become interested in what we were learning. Honestly, like you said Mrs. Smith, I can look back at that class and say that I enjoyed taking that class over all of the classes I took two years before that. I really hope that this is how this class will go. I hope we can make it the best we can make it. GO WILD WARRIOR WOMEN!!!!!! 08 BABY!!!!

P.S.
Steven says hello

courtneyw said...

What I hope to get out of this English Literature class is to become more knowledgeable in reading and writing. I also want to become more in know with my voice so that I can state my ideas and thoughts in class.
In this class I want to learn more about pre-20th century literature. I also want to learn to write a good college essay and I also want to be able to pick the best college essay.
Truthfully when I was at my old school grades were never on my mind. But right at this moment grades are constantly on my mind. I want to get good grades and try my hardest. The way I learn best is by more hands-on stuff and visualization. I don’t do we’ll with writing things down.
Activities that I have done in my pass classes that were meaningful and interesting to me was projects and group work. I feel as if working in groups or being creative make class much more enjoyable and fun.

JoeR said...

During the first three years of my high school education, I have taken English courses that have improved my writting abilities beyond belief. This coming year I don't plan to slow down at all and to grow even more as a writer. I want to learn new and better ways to be the best student I can be in college. I feel this class will provide me with everything to be successful- from leadership all the way to writting abilities. Grades for me shouldn't be something a student should worry about, instead I feel the grades should reflect the students effort put in on a daily basis. I feel that this is one of the flaws in education today- kids stress too much in class about grades and don't get the true meaning of the class. Because this is a college prep class the students should be doing everything possible to benefit for their future. I enjoy group projects and activities that allow everyone to express their own opinion- to me that is the best way to learn. I look forward to this year and the challenges it poses.

jaket said...

I want to have as much fun as possible in this class it's our last year and we all got an awesome teacher.. I'm excited to do the 21c vision. I think it's cool that were going to be a part of the technology revolution. I like that we make the class what it is. I think this class will set me up for college more than any other class. I can't wait for an awesome class with an awesome teacher .. Mrs. Smith! I think well have a lot of fun this year and bond as a class. And you can't go wrong with donuts on Wednesdays. Go seniors class of 2008 baby!!!

ryan f said...

To start off, I feel very privillaged to be in a class of mostly all seniors and be a junior. I think that this is going to be an amazing learning experience in many ways. Not only will i gain the assumed knowledge of english literature, but i am going to, luckily, be able to witness, first-hand, what it is going to be like to go through the whole college application process. I hope that from this class, I will be fully prepared for all that my senior year has to offer. I am excited that we will be studying english literature, but also using that to prepare for our future. As for the grades, because this is my junior year, i am willing to do whatever it takes to make the "A". This class means a lot to me and my GPA, so i don't want to let anything stop me or slow me down, even when it comes down to the final weeks before the rest of you are done with high school. For me, i think student to student interaction, as well as natural student with teacher interaction is best. Some of the best ways to reach that level of natural interaction is through activities like fishbowls and big group discussions.

Charliep said...

I am so happy to be a senior. This year should be amazing. I hope to leave this class feeling more then prepared for the college classes I take next year. I hope to learn techniques in reading, note-taking, and writing to make my next English class less difficult next year. The more I am prepared the better I will feel when making the transition. Grades to me show how well I understand the material. I am a visual learner. Any activities that we do as a class teaching each other have really helped me understand better.

brooksk said...

I agree with Ryan, and like Smith was saying in class the other day, student-led classes and student initiated discussions tend to be the most successful method for me and most peers I know in adequately learning the material. And by learning, I actually mean LEARN; able to recall later on down the road and apply to another aspect.

rebeccar said...

This class is basically our last chance to get prepared for the reading and writing tasks we will face next year in college. Therefore, we must take advantage of all of our assignments and projects this year in order to transition into strong, powerful writers. We pretty much know by now what it takes to be a “good” writer, but I want to learn what specifics college professors will expect and look for in our writing next year. Grades are very important because it is the first thing colleges, teachers, and future employers typically look at. However they fail to show how smart we actually are; they just show how dedicated we are to having an attractive transcript. I learn best through talking about things with other students because that way we can thrive on and add to each other’s ideas. Class discussions where people actually prepare in advance and have an opinion on the issue are the most meaningful and interesting ways for me to learn.

MilendaN. said...

The thought of being a senior this year has not sunk in yet. But Im sure it will sooner or later. I want my last year of high school to be the best year of my high school years. I want it to be unforgettable and something that I will remember and talk about years from now. What I want to get out of from this class is the ability to continue my passion for writing and to be even greater at it. Grades are so important to me because its a preparation to get me set up for college and for what I want to be someday. I want to be successful at what I do now and in the future and I do believe that good grades can benefit you to that. I learn best at always practicing and writing lots of notes is always helpful. My advice for my fellow seniors is that just enjoy every minute of this year,spent time with your closest friends as much as possible get to know some new people,still study and keep up with the work but make sure to have fun. Because this year will go by so fast and before we even know it we'll be done with high school..

Go Warriors of "O8".
xoxo

Leigh J said...

As my final English class at Arapahoe, I am exited to get everything out of it I possibly can. This means perfecting my writing skills, which I already feel strongly about. I would also like to actually enjoy the books we read in class. Because this is my last year, I will be working for me, not for the grade. I hope to read into the books and find it more exciting than I have in past classes. I would really like to learn about college essays, because my writing will have the most impact in those essays this year. It is important to me to find out how to write an essay that makes me stand out to the admissions offices. I agree with Joe in that the system seems to be flawed in the way that grades are looked at. Grades should not be the sole meaning of taking a class. Students should get more out of a class than a boost to their GPA, and that is what I am looking for. While I hope to receive an A in this class, I do not look to the A as my success. I will instead look to what I have learned and its ability to aid and impact my future. I lean best through anything that is not a sole power point lecture. I find it difficult when there is little class participation, and fully benefit from hands on work. Last semester was the first English class that I really liked. The way that my teacher was able to tie in our world and personal life into our learning seemed really beneficial.

ryanb said...

One of the things I am really hoping to get out of this class is the ability to be able to write a strong college essay as well as score high on the SAT and ACT English sections. The hardest thing for me has always been getting past that brick wall when I’m trying to write. I can never seem to whip out sentences as quickly as other people and it seems as though being able to learn how to do this would greatly help me in the future. To me, grades show how hard someone is willing to work more than that individual’s intelligence. I learn best, although I hate to admit it, by memorization and lectures, and not through creative activities. Also, I am not a fan of group discussions and projects.

Kyle B. said...

I forgot to scroll down the rest of the page the other night, which means that I had missed this awesome blog post, but luckily, since I wish to share my ideas with such a high vigor that I am jumping up and down, I will do so now. As I had shared in class, I wish to have a fun, yet meaningful time in this class this year, an attribute that no senior seems to have expressed thus far. I know that I have an excellent writing style (consult Mrs. Comp if there is disbelief), but due to that, I wish to simply refine and perfect the way I write. I have good reading skills as well, so instead of learning to read after 12 years in public schools, I wish to find a way to keep myself interested in what I do read. I have never found great importance in grades. I recognize that schools think that they show my participation, but I would bappen to disagree. I have always been an active student, but I occassionally fail to do homework or I tend to turn stuff in late, but nonetheless, such patterns fail to describe what I do in a class period and thus, hold no extreme value of significance in my book. I want to have a good time in this class without feeling pressured to follow the group, but I think that this particular curriculum will help me do so if anything. SENIORS!!!

alliem said...

I really hope to learn to like writing better, my main goal however is to be prepared for college (admissions essay!). I want to learn how to work in a class that is more independent and college-like. I think that I am a visual learner so I do my best when a can see or picture things or ideas. I really like group projects and class discussions such as fishbowl.

emilyl said...

Because I had such a terrible English class last year, I really want to improve my writing skills, because the teacher didn't really critique my papers the way I would have liked. Also, I hope to learn how to recognize and trace themes and motifs more easily, because I really haven't gotten the hang of that yet. Hopefully what we read will be a little more interesting, because last year's reading was kind of a dud. Finally, I hope that we can have a lot of class discussions; I never participated in Amer. Lit Hon. so I would like to join in on as much as I can this year.
Sorry this post is late, but that is everything I hope to get out of English Lit this year.