"The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires." Reading William Arthur Ward's quotation, I begin to reflect on my own teaching experiences and classroom environment. I try to inspire my students by telling them they have to leave their “comfort zone” and push aside their insecurities to see themselves for the remarkable students they truly are.
I currently teach three AP Language and Composition classes - junior level, two Contemporary Literature classes - senior level, and one SAT Prep class - mixed level.
My school's student population is diverse in ability, career aspiration, needs, and demographic composition. Our diversity has given us the unique opportunity to model the challenges and benefits of a global community within our walls.
May 13th may be just another day on the calendar, but to my students, May 13th is the day they have been preparing for the entire school year: the AP Language and Composition Exam. Earning a 3, 4, or 5 on the exam will give my students an opportunity to be ahead of the game and begin college with three English credits.
Three years ago, the AP Language program was barely alive - only two sections were available with a total of 28 students. This year, the program has grown leaps and bounds. We have five sections with over one hundred students. 100% of the students enrolled in the class take the AP Exam. Even if they do not receive the sought after score, they still experience a college-level curriculum in a high school setting.
This high increase of AP students speaks volumes of their dedication and commitment to learning and striving to be the best they can be.
Since writing is so heavily weighted on the AP Exam, I make sure to incorporate writing throughout the year. Did I say incorporate? I mean hit them over the head with it EVERYDAY! From daily warm-up voice lessons to full-blown timed essays, my students have surrendered to a love/hate relationship with writing. They love the creative freedom that accompanies many of the non-fiction texts we read, but they despise the dreaded timed essays that are a must for the exam in May.
Since we dissect writing on a daily basis, a document camera would make the writing samples and pages from a book more diverse, realistic, and vivid. I, along with my students, would be able to deliver authentic presentations that catch and keep the room's attention.
When I reflect on my classroom environment, one word comes to mind: collaboration. My classroom is a performance-based classroom in which collaboration is a necessity. From jigsaws to learning centers, my students collaborate with their peers on a daily basis. I am not a teacher who lectures and expects the students to regurgitate what “I” think. My students learn from their peers as much as they learn from me. I work hard to ensure that my lessons are representative of higher order thinking skills, as well as performance tasks that are meaningful and engaging to students.
With your donation, my students would benefit from the use of technology with real-world materials, not virtual representations. Your help would mean so much to me and my students. Thank you for taking the time to read this proposal.
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