9th graders take a state test in biology next week, so we did our annual “Fan Poster” activity this week. (See the end of this post: http://drawingonmath.blogspot.com/2012/05/state-test-prep.html). Yesterday I had students fill out the sheets. They were surprisingly serious about it. It’s hard to get them to sit and focus on anything in June, so I was worried they’d declare this activity corny and blow it off. Instead they thought carefully and took their time. One student who is frequently rude was taking an especially long time – I eventually discovered she was having a hard time thinking of something nice to say about a few people (myself included). This doesn’t seem like a good thing, but I think it’s spectacular. She didn’t take the easy way out and write something generic like “she’s nice” – this student was thinking hard about a meaningful sentiment to share. It was totally worth all the class time she spent!
Today students came into class asking if I’d made their posters yet, they remembered and were eager to see!
This afternoon I sat down to glue down all the boxes. Kids wrote cute, funny, kind, genuine and specific things about their classmates. They were fun to read. My favorite ones are the reasons kids are fans of themselves- some fill the entire box with their best characteristics and others write “because I’m me.”
This evening I wrote the names in the middle of the posters (I glued the boxes down to look like a frame). I’m unreasonably proud of the fact that I am good enough at writing that I could judge the appropriate letter size to fill all available space despite the very different name lengths.
So many good things and we haven’t even gotten to the best part- giving the kids their poster!