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Re: On Pencils - the "Good Witch/Bad Witch" approach


From: Maggie White (mwhiteaz_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sun Aug 08 2004 - 19:18:41 PDT

I think I'm the one who started that thread in January Judy mentions. I
had all kinds of good responses, but decided to take Judy's approach for
borrowing a pencil. I made up little slips of paper on which they had
to write down something they were thankful for, then trade it to me for
a pencil--usually, not very good pencils, either. I was surprised at
the thoughtful comments they often made. It was a kinder, gentler
approach for my MSers, and relieved some of the stress I was experiencing.

My EEI teacher long ago said, "Just give 'em the pencil and get on with
your lesson!" I was more strict with my HS students, but lightened up
with these MSers. (One of our high school goals was to get the students
to take more personal responsibility. A lofty goal for MS as well, but
in comparison to other "battles," it seemed kinda minor.)


Judith Decker wrote:

> I made my middlers "count their blessings". They had
> to tell me one thing they were thankful for and then
> of course write their name in the "Naughty Book" (page
> for their class)

> Forgetting a pencil was a minor thing - I would much
> rather have working kids...
> Go back to the January thread - Some high school
> teachers joined in on that one. I had witches and
> wizards on the brain at the time... I did get that
> lesson plan for IAD.