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September 21, 2011

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HeyTeach101

I love following this saga of students excited and engaged in learning! Their initiative and eager curiosity speak volumes about the power of project based learning. And I appreciate that you are also sharing your concerns and missteps as you move through this experience.
I teach college reading and writing to freshmen. Even though I deeply believe in active learning and importance of engagement, I struggle to find ways to duplicate that level of intellectual excitement in my students. Reading your story has inspired me to redouble my efforts to create inquiry based learning opportunities as they build their language skills. Thanks.
http://to-read-to-write.com

Marsha

Thank you HeyTeach101 for your kind support. I would imagine that it is tough to engage college freshman because they're just experiencing so much freedom and the world is opening before their eyes.

I do believe the key is finding an entry point that will hit some familiar note with your students. I'd also imagine that issues of social justice would be strong in most college freshman.

I also know that my son was a professor with this age students....he had to use their own music and YouTube videos to catch their attention and bring it into his Philosophy classes. I remember him saying not too long ago that many of the real-world challenges that his students faced equipped them to relate to Greek philosophy much better than he had at their same age. The ideas of rap deal with injustices and death in ways that are parallel to what the Greeks spoke about. I don't know exactly what those were, what music he actually used or the video that matched....but he got amazing things out of disinterested, disengaged students about the same age as yours.

Just an idea. I'm sure you know better than I do what will work.

Again thanks for your kind words.

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