Today is one of my favorite days of the year...Monday! (False). No, actually today is the kick off to the Satire Project in which seniors must work in groups to create a satire of some element of society, using multimedia, and create either a product or a presentation which showcases their final purpose. These students have spent years making very specific projects in very specific ways to demonstrate "mastery" but this is one of the first scenarios in which they have complete control over the design, creation, and implementation of the project.
While I'm interested to see how they turn out, Day 1 is always the most exciting because, for a moment, options are unlimited. Students come up with extremely ambitious and sometimes impossible ideas in the early brainstorming because they're excited about the possibilities. As with all things in life, the ideal is not always the reality, but it's great that students are able to start big rather than crippling themselves from the beginning.
My challenge for next year is to design more of the curriculum in this manner. In fact, this should really be the method for teaching most all of my major concepts. The biggest hurdle in English is the reading. Despite all the fun activities that can occur before and after reading, the time-intensive task of reading the book and understanding the key concepts is essential before anything else can happen. While flipped learning and gamification are great tools, they still can't replace the reading of the book.
So that's Day 1 of the Satire Project. Last year, I had many excellent examples from infomercials, to the "Ratford School" to Gym Class Heroes. Here's to the next batch of Senior Satire!
English Teacher | Instructional Technology Specialist | 2014-15 PBS Digital Innovator | Gamification Researcher | Marathon Runner | Ph.D RMU 2015