Reflection: Lesson Planning Defining True Education with David Foster Wallace Day 2 - Section 3: Mini-Lesson: Charts and Graphs as Rhetoric

 

I was surprised just how much the students liked this speech.  I think a lot of it had to do with the video and hearing his voice—he comes across as very relatable to young people, and that, as well as his basic premise of moving beyond their default self-centeredness, seemed to strike a chord with the students.  Additionally, it really worked to bring together all of the other reading they’ve done—I was able to connect Emerson, Crawford, and Wallace in how they define true education very similarly.  As they go into reading about the synthesis essay this evening, this model should serve them well to understand their task as they think about the prompt and their own essays.  Overall, I get the sense that they feel confident going in to the essay.  I certainly will keep this as the final reading of the unit in the future.

The charts mini-lesson was surprisingly a good one.  The activity I used was a looser version of a data analysis protocol from the National School Reform Faculty website (www.nsrfharmony.org) that worked well; the reader-response entry was a nice way to get into the charts that students didn’t seem to balk at (I could sense an initial anxiety when I first said we would spend some time with these).  I will definitely look to do a more intensive lesson on this skill in the future.

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Defining True Education with David Foster Wallace Day 2

Unit 4: Thematic Unit: Education
Lesson 17 of 18

Objective: SWBAT synthesize ideas about education from multiple sources by joint construction with the instructor connecting Wallace's ideas to other readings.

Big Idea: Synthesizing big ideas can lead to deeper study of smaller, more concrete ones.

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