To Mark (whose particpation on this list always is interesting to me) I would
say that as a K-6 teacher for a dozen years or so, don't over estimate what
your students don't know or might have gotten had some other teacher been
teaching them other then the one before you. Ben is absolutely right. Too
much talk and my students eyes start to glaze. Ask 6th graders about
concepts we covered in our discussion of the Renaissance earlier this year
and you get that look. But, the work they did was good. I mean we only see
them once a week for a couple of minutes. Its a crazy system.
On the other hand, Ben's point is a good one. They come to make stuff and we
keep on the lookout for when those teachable moments arise. I have to remind
myself: teach the student, not the curriculum.