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Re: [teacherartexchange] Words of Wisdom

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From: Woody Duncan (woodyduncan_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sat Oct 21 2006 - 15:08:09 PDT


> Do any of you have any words of wisdom for a first-year teacher?
> Should I
> work on developing a themed curriculum, or should I base my project
> ideas on
> what the kids are interested in at the time (whether it's random or
> not)?
> So far, I have been doing the latter.
>
> I'd appreciate comments or suggestions you may have!
>
> Thanks, and nice to meet you all....
>
> Sarah

Sarah,
        San D gave you really good advice about looking up your state standards
and developing lessons based upon them. You mention your random method
you use know. That's the way most of us started out. We tested the
waters to see
what worked. Later you will begin to get a feel for what works best
and what fits
your own teaching style. Teach around your own interests. Your
students will
see it when you really care about a lesson. They are very perceptive.
I taught
middle school. If I was into White Water Rafting, we did watercolors
of rafting.
When I was into Soccer, we did acrylic paintings of soccer players in
action.

        It's a shame, but a fact, that the first 3 years are just training
years. We
practice on those students so we will get good enough to really
teach. As
you get your sea legs under you, I suggest that you learn to sequence
each
new lesson into a logical sequence so that one lesson blends into the
next.
The learning will make more sense and stick with your students better.
Build your sequence from simple to more complex. Start out with basic
concepts and skills and build toward the more complex and increased
difficulty. I'd even suggest you try to have the subject matter tie
together
in some logical way, perhaps use different shapes week after week.
I used to do an entire semester for 7th grade around the same
motif "the face". Not that I would try that in elementary.

        You will find your own way, in time. Don't expect it all to fall into
place right away.
                                                Woody

Woody, Retired in Albuquerque
         mailto:woodyduncan@comcast.net

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