Friday, January 30, 2009

One to Watch - a performance artist

I thought I had posted about this before but I can't find it. This is a post from Michelle Krill in her Finding Common Ground blog. She has a Youtube video embedded there that I think you should watch.

This is a young performance artist in her school who does a wonderful piece for Martin Luther King, Jr's birthday celebration. This is one talented young lady. How nice it is that she was not only capable of doing this, but that she was given the opportunity to do it.

I heard another story recently of a class that was studying a novel together. They had to come up with some sort of project. I forget the details of the assignment. One boy brought in his clarinet. He had written some original music that he thought fit the characters in the story. He would play the short piece and then ask the class which character it was. The class got EVERY ONE of those characters right. I was told that a couple students would occasionally disagree about which character it was about, but (and this is the cool part) they had great discussions about WHY. "That music sounded ...., but the character is ...." Interesting, no?

The moral of the story is this: What if the kids were given the opportunity to show their understanding of your content in ways that were meaningful to them? Hard to know how to grade it, for sure, isn't it? But, do you think that the connection would be deeper? I do.

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