One of my favorite things about teaching was incorporating impromptu ideas in the next day’s lessons

When I taught, I taught block periods, meaning I had kids for 90+ minutes at a time.  I loved it, as it gave me a lot of time to build flow and to incorporate different things into a single class.  Plus, it also gave a natural life-like flow to class versus a choppiness, and one of the great benefits to that is I got a chance ot know my classes and students better on a human level.  Also, one of the things I learned the hard way was that every single day the lesson or class activity had to be interesting, *especially* in a block class, or I was screwed (teens forced to sit through a boring lesson for 90 minutes can do interesting things to keep themselves occupied, especially when a non-intimidating teacher like me is in front of the class 🙂 ).  Anyway, one of things i loved was having an idea the night before, and incorporating it into the next day’s lesson.  For example, in Stranger Things there were a lot of allusions to various 1980s films including ET.  So what I might do if I were teaching English today was show 2 minutes of the bike scene from ET and then 2 minutes from the bike scene of STranger Things, then ask the students to compare the two.  I would then explain that this was a type of allusion, that Stranger Things was alluding to (or pointing to or borrowing from) ET; there is a 10% chance a student would ask about allusion versus pirating, which could lead to interesting conversation and a secondary/smaller lesson. I always found that video – even just a 2 minute clip was a great way to teach the less tangible concepts in literature like symbolism, theme, allusion, etc.  Inevitably when I did this there would be one or two C or D students who would say, “Oooohhhh.”  Anyway, I always loved moments like that, where I could quickly illustrate something with an interesting or fresh medium in less than 10 minutes.  I miss those moments 🙂  

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One of my favorite things about teaching was incorporating impromptu ideas in the next day’s lessons

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