Reflection: Intrinsic Motivation Credible or Incredible? Smith & Bradford Face Off - Section 2: Introduction


Honestly, I know that I am a performer every day in my classroom.  Lessons like this one, especially the discussion on John Smith's account, can completely benefit the learning environment.  We all know that happy kids make more engaged learners, so I take this as my cue to insert humor, acting, and seemingly-off-the-cuff comments about the lesson into each period.  I appreciate that John Smith's account gives me such a platform to be that way.  Students brought up all the "right" credibility issues in class, and I went out of my way to mimic things like John Smith managing to evade 300 armed Native Americans, John giving the Native Americans a lecture on how people were connected to the Earth (in English?), and Pocohontas throwing herself on top of a darn-close-to-perfect stranger to save him from her father's death order (and at least the third impending doom that he faced during the excerpt).  Not only does it capture them, but they are excited to tell me more credibility issues that I can get overly-emphatic about!  

Probably my favorite part of this section of the lesson wasn't what happened within the lesson time, however.  My favorite part of this lesson is that later in the halls I was able to hear students chuckling about how someone had really "John-Smith-ed" something (i.e., exaggerated).  I have the distinct feeling that students also left today and told their parents something interesting or entertaining from that hour, and since it was all grounded in skills that they have practiced several times at this point, they could probably also tell them what they were learning about!  This was definitely a successful day, even though the text and content itself could initially appear to be boring.  

  My Job is at Least 25% Comedy...
  Intrinsic Motivation: My Job is at Least 25% Comedy...
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Credible or Incredible? Smith & Bradford Face Off

Unit 1: Early American Voices & Developing Reading Habits
Lesson 8 of 9

Objective: SWBAT provide evidence from colonial narratives to validate their evaluation of the author's credibility and draw comparisons between Puritan and modern lifestyles through textual analysis and class discussion.

Big Idea: Who to believe...a man accused of the "erasure" of colonial history or a man elected as governor 30 times? The answer might surprise you.

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