Dear CNMT community,
And so here we are, the last week of school. It’s been quite an adventure this first year as a new small school at Roosevelt High School.
There have been some frustrating moments and some great moments, but one thing I know is we all will be grateful to have some time to reflect, relax, and re-energize. I want to thank all of the teachers and students in CNMT for making this year such a great experience.
I got some good news this week. In a meeting with people from the district, I learned that they’re going to support the pilot program to buy the Nook Color for all 11th graders next year instead of using paper textbooks. We will be the first school in LAUSD to pilot this innovative approach, which means that we are using our textbook funds to purchase the devices and using free digital textbooks instead of buying expensive paper textbooks from the monopolistic publishing companies. Continue reading
Dear CNMT Community,
This week I’ve been thinking about hope and how important it is in education. This started on Wednesday when I went to the Local District 5 principals’ meeting and saw Father Greg Boyle speak. I had seen video of Father Greg before, and I have also read and taught the book G Dog and the Homeboys, but I’d never seen him speak in person before.
I was incredibly impressed by the way he presented himself. Of course Father Greg is known for being incredibly compassionate, and he’s also known as a great storyteller. His stories were both funny and deeply moving, and he left me with the feeling that I wanted to be a better person.
One of the things of Father Greg talked about was the importance of hope and having second, third and fourth chances. This reminds me of another person that I’ve been thinking about lately, Harvey Milk. His most well-known speech as well is about hope, and he is known for saying, “You gotta give ‘em hope.” Continue reading
Dear CNMT community,
This week I went to visit a school in Escondido, which is a suburb of San Diego, along with Ms. Chavez and Ms. Hayes. We were attending an event sponsored by Apple. At this workshop, the school showed off the iRead initiative that they have been using in the Escondido school district.
This initiative was created to improve reading, writing and oral fluency for English learner students in particular. The school that we visited has been using iPod Touches for a few years now and it has seen a lot of success with these tools. Originally the iRead initiative focused on building fluency with a simple idea that students would record themselves reading passage on the iPod and would then listen to themselves. They did this several times over the school year and found that fluency improved dramatically more than they would’ve expected if they had not been using these devices.
Now the with the advent of the iPod Touch and the App Store and all of the educational applications, these devices have really taken off. Especially with the one-to-one implementation that they have, they are really seeing some amazing results. These little tools can do so much! Continue reading