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Volume 2 Number 2

Cheryl Ristow never thought her life would change so much with one click. This month's cover story tracks our own Aggie/CA from net newbie to published author!
Effective Teaching by Harry & Rosemary Wong
Promoting Learning by Marv Marshall
Alfie Kohn Article
4 Blocks by Cheryl Sigmon
School Psychologist by Beth Bruno
Jan Fisher Column
BCL Classroom by Kim Tracy
Read Across America
How to Excel as a Reading Specialist
Independent Learning
ADD and the Structured Environment
How Do I Manage a Class?
6 Traits of Writing
Indians for Mascots
Child Violence
The Unsinkable Sub
Visually Impaired and EC
Magic Slippers Poem
Becoming a Tech Savvy Administrator
The Killing of a Spirit
Bullying in Schools
Student Photo of Mars
Web News & Events
Upcoming Ed Conferences
Poll: Weirdest Thing?
Letters to the Editor
New in the Lesson Bank
Humor from the Classroom
Help Wanted - Teaching Jobs
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Lesson #2106. Remake of Our Town

Posted by Holly Dunlea, Pembroke Academy, Pembroke, NH (US)
Literature, level: all; Materials Required: creative, open minds
Activity Time: 1 month, work on this as time permits; Concepts Taught: understanding Wilder's style, effective playwriting and stage direction

My students read Our Town and discussed Wilder's style, society at that time, and compared it to other literary works we had studied. I gave my students a challenge: "Write you own Our Town play as a class. Create a setting with which you are all familiar, characters, problems and solutions. Write a script complete with staging, lighting, and sound directions. Make invitations, practice, and perform the play for an audience of at least 2 classes. 'Slackers' will be pulled from the project and required to write a play on their own. The class is also required to keep a calendar in order to stay on track and complete the project on time. This is a student wirtten and directed play."

After the ideas for the play were finalized, I taught the students about play-writing, staging, blocking, lighting and directing (one lesson). The class handled this assignment beautifully. They thoroughly understood Wilder's play and style by the end of the project. They learned about collaboration, cooperation, and they took pride in their writing. Invitations and programs were made. The audience laughed and sighed at various parts of the play confirming the success of the story line. My students said this project was hard (collaboration), but they loved doing it (pride). If you try this, give your students time to make mistakes. I tried not to comment during class discussions. My comments usually came at the end or beginning of a 1/2 hour session as a way of wrapping up or reminder of what they had planned to accomplish.

Assessment was done on a daily basis using an observational form I had from a workshop. It was required that students attend class on the day of the play. One student was going to be unable to, so he wrote his own play. One student was frequently absent, so she wrote her own play. Another student was slacking, and he wrote a play and made the invitations and program. I will be doing this again with other dramas.


2119. Archaeological Dig (Middle,History)
2118. The Cell Play (Middle,Science)
2117. Number Song (all,)
2116. Help with Multiplication Facts (Elementary,Mathematics)
2115. The Mitten, Jan Bret (Elementary,Literature)

2114. Twenty-four (Elementary,Mathematics)
2113. Elements in greed in Charles Dickens Great Expectations (Senior,Literature)
2112. The Mitten (Elementary,Mathematics)
2111. Field Trips on Nature Topics (all,Science)
2110. Great Empires of the Americas; part III: The Incan Empire (Middle,History)

2109. Who were the Pharaohs of the Pyramid Age? (Middle,History)
2108. crickets in the classroom (Middle,Science)
2107. Shared Reading: Mrs. Wishy Washy (Elementary,Reading/Writing)
2106. Remake of Our Town (all,Literature)
2105. ole (Elementary,Science)

2104. Detective (Elementary,Phys Ed)
2103. Guided Reading: Rosie's Walk (Elementary,Reading/Writing)
2102. Shared Reading: Mrs. Wishy Washy (Elementary,Reading/Writing)
2101. Volcano Model (Middle,Science)
2100. DNA and genetics (Middle,Science)

2099. Writing a Story/Faerie Tale (all,Literature)
2098. Math Graph Center (Elementary,Mathematics)
2097. Newberry Award Reading Project (Middle,Literature)
2096. Nurse day (Elementary,other)
2095. My mitten (Pre-School,Art)

2094. We're Going Buggy: A unit of ideas! (Elementary,other)
2093. Winter theme activities compiled: Snow, The Mitten, Weather (all,other)
2092. Animals in Winter - part 2 (Elementary,Science)
2091. rain storm (Pre-School,Music)
2090. Paddle-to-the-Sea (Elementary,Literature)

2089. Understanding The Internet (Senior,Computer)
2088. sounding out words (Pre-School,4 Blocks)
2087. Comprehension through The Very Hungry Caterpillar (other,Reading/Writing)
2086. Comprehension through The Very Hungry Caterpillar (other,Reading/Writing)
2085. Descriptive Writing (Middle,Reading/Writing)

2084. Nutrition/Food Pyramid Ideas compiled from Mailring search (Pre-School,Science)
2083. Travel Brochure (Senior,Language)
2082. Opposite Vocabulary Development (Antonyms (Pre-School,Language)
2081. Film adaptations (Senior,Literature)
2080. Film adaptations (Senior,Literature)

2079. Understanding WH Question Forms (Elementary,Language)
2078. Book Projects: The Cay (Elementary,Reading/Writing)
2077. Teaching Fractions Easily (Elementary,Mathematics)
2076. I didn't know know that you can Jump higher on the moon? (Elementary,Science)
2075. Fun with Greater or less in Math (Elementary,Mathematics)

2074. My Pet (Elementary,Reading/Writing)
2073. Building Blocks of a Story (Elementary,Language)
2072. Speechreading (Middle,Language)
2071. Create Your Own COMMUNITY (Middle,Literature)
2070. Healthy Eating (Elementary,Health)

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