Saturday, April 2, 2016

Genius Hour-Week One

One of the classes that I teach is a Sixth Grade Fine Arts class. I have these students for a semester and many of those kids wanted to be in a Fine Arts class and many of those students really did not want to be in class, but because of scheduling that is where they ended up. 

While we do have fun doing many of the music activities that I do in class, getting those students that aren't truly excited about music engaged in class can be truly difficult. One of my colleagues has been doing Genius Hour with her Pre-AP Seventh Grade Science students, and like any good teacher...I stole her idea. Thanks Katie!

For those of you that don't know what Genius Hour is, it is movement to allow students to learn about whatever they want to learn about and turn their learning into passion projects. Each Friday my students will get to learn about and research whatever they want to learn about! They take what they learn and present and share with the world! At the end of this post I have included some of the resources that I used to start up Genius Hour in my classroom.  

I pitched it to my students with the condition that if we get accomplished all we need to do music related Monday through Thursday, then Friday was their day to learn about whatever they wanted to learn about it. The response was fabulous! 

Let's talk about the fact that one of my students wore this shirt because he "wanted to experience all of Genius Hour." Love!

The first week of this project was just to brainstorm and find ideas that they wanted do their projects over. When they come back to Genius Hour next Friday they need to have a solid proposal for me to approve. Here are just a few of the ideas that they have come up with so far:

  • One young man wants to learn more about the Science behind why Music makes us feel certain emotions.
  • One young man wants to research his family history.
  • One young lady wants to design and sew a line of dresses for her family and friends.
  • One young man wants to use computer software to design skateboard parks.
  • One young man wants to save endangered Cheetahs.
  • One young lady wants to learn how to speak Japanese.
  • One young lady wants to research fashion trends from the 1900s to today.
  • One young man wants to build airplanes and see which one can fly the fastest.
I'm so excited to see where this goes and how this will engage my students in learning and allow them to pursue their own interests!


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