As preparation for today's activity, I start by asking students to reflect on skills in which they have improved during our most recent unit. I list all the standards we studied on the board as a reference point but also explain that non-standard-related growth, such as study skills or reading speed, would also be okay to mention. These skills may not directly relate to standards, but they help students meet standards and thus are important.
Many students feel more confident in their ability to recognize text structure, both in informational and fictional texts. As we spent A LOT of time studying this, I'm happy to hear their responses. I know not all of them reached proficiency, but they did GROW; that they recognize the growth is important to me.
I take students back in time (verbally) and remind them that we once discussed their final exam. I ask, what is it?
"A presentation, right?" Yup. Of?
"Our work?" Yes. We've already practiced writing a clear, concise commentary in a previous lesson. Students have the foundation of a thorough, detailed presentation through this practice. Today, we'll focus on how to present with poise: eye contact, appropriate volume, and clear articulation. I explain that these three skills help make a speaker seem professional (and thus convincing). Then, I model how to do it myself, "presenting" my growth in horse-back riding (I get groans for this--apparently I talk about horses a lot).
I ask students to complete another artifact commentary today, ideally based on a unit 2 standard, and to practice presentation skills. Since I cannot watch every student present during the hour, I ask them to film themselves with their iPads so that I can take time to give great feedback (this is, after all, prep for their exam--it deserves time).
Students move into work time, and I circulate to answer questions. Since we've done commentaries before, there are few questions.
At the end of the hour, I ask for a show of thumbs, up or down, for confidence with the presentations. Most students feel confident.
Check out the student example included in resources. For this student, I recommend: