Monday, October 31, 2011

Here we go....!

It's 7:55 Monday morning of 2nd quarter.  It's begun.  The kids are always super tired and usually pretty quiet during 1st hour, so I have to assume they are excited about choice based.  But I won't know until later I guess.  Here's to jumping in feet first!  :)

Thursday, October 27, 2011


I just had an opportunity to briefly talk to another professional teacher that I know that does CB in their classroom and aaackkk!, my head is spinning, but in a good way.  I'm gung ho to get started.  I think I am going to do a hybrid model between DBAE and CB for this first quarter to make my transition from one to the other a little smoother.  That's what I say now, we'll see how it actually goes, right?!  I've already started on getting my classroom rearranged into "stations".  Currently they're sitting empty until the start of the next quarter, which is next week.  As I demo the materials from the stations and the possibilities available with them, then the room will start to fill up.  Here's a picture of the room as it transitions over to the new model. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I'm jumping in...

Okay, so I'm doing it.  I'm jumping in head first into CB at the start of next quarter which is only a week, less than a week, away.  I'm CRAAAAAZZZZZZZY!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Some thoughts...

So, I don't know why, but all of a sudden, it's becoming plainly obvious that I really need to do something different in my classroom.  You know how that is?  Once you're thinking about doing something, or have decided to do something, all signs seem to point in that direction.  That's what's happening with the whole idea of choice based for me.  I have a limited amount of table space to set out the materials for the different projects that are going on in my classes right now.  I am constantly having to switch up what's out, and it takes time, and frankly, it gets pretty tiresome after a point.  I was thinking to myself that this is definitely one problem that having a CB room would solve.  In my first few years of teaching (currently I'm in my sixth), I would have been too rigid to put all of the different materials out at once, but now, I'm looking to do just that and am excited about it.  No more running here to get this or that when it's all out.  YAY!  I'm getting excited about it and might have to start CB early!  My original plan was to start 3rd quarter because it's a nice uninterrupted quarter for our district, but I may have to start early.  I'm ready to get a jump start.  I've actually tried it with the final project for the my 7th grade classes, so I'll let you know how it goes!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Students want choice!

Next week is the end of the quarter for my students and I was explaining to some of my students that we were going to have a short final project of the quarter because we were under a time crunch.  They of course were asking what the project was and I have a pretty good idea of what I'm going to have them do, but haven't definitely made up my mind yet.  One student asked if they could have a choice as to what they would do for their final project.  Hmmmm, my mind began spinning of course.  Why not get a test run of a project choice in for them?  I was planning on doing a small project maybe this would be a good opportunity to give it a test run?  What can it hurt right??  ha! 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Here's my landscape for now...

 So as I understand it, working in a choice based room requires you to/needs you to have stations set up in your room that represent the different media or materials the students have a choice of.  As part of my documentation process, I wanted to get a picture of what my landscape (room) looks like right now and then see how it changes once I incorporate the stations into my room.  So here's what it looks like right now, and I'll keep you updated on what changes!

I'm very fortunate to have a nice sized room with ample workspace for the students.  Currently it is nice and open and I hope to be able to keep it that way so I can maintain a clear view around the room and keep any discipline problems at a minimum.  

The room has a wall of shelving for storage of work that is in process.  Usually this is a pretty good amount of storage space, but when the projects start to get a little big, and an entire class is doing big projects, the floor surrounding the shelves starts to get taken over sometimes.  :)

It's begun!

So, in my never ending quest to learn and grow I have decided to tackle choice based art education (CBAE) in my classroom.  I'm using it as my growth plan project topic this year, so come along with me on my journey!