Monday, February 8, 2010

Bargain planners (for my mentee kids)

One of my Visible Teacher Librarian roles in the school is to mentor senior students.  At my school, all senior students, and all teaching staff, are offered the opportunity to participate in this program.  How you work with your student/s is up to you (most people take on one or two students).  Since I elected to take three Year 11 students last year, and was requested by four, I took the four, but decided I needed to be more systematic in working with them - especially, to see them all together for regular meetings, so this extra involves one period per cycle, not four.  I also thought the synergy of the group, sharing their own ups and downs, would benefit them.

The topics we've covered have been partly decided by me (based on what's going on in the general school timetable, eg. exams) and partly from student suggestions - how do I do this? get organised? work out a study plan? etc.  I've also shared my worksheets on the school intranet so other staff can use them with their mentees if they wish

Planning and organisation have been consistent themes.  My first meeting with my now Year 12 group (I've farewelled my last year's HSC mentees and have not yet acquired this year's Year 11's, although I've had two students approach me so far...) is today.  I was so pleased, yesterday, to happen on this bargain at Smiggle (a shop full of funky mad stationery - they have physical shops and a website).

A year planner is a great tool for students to have in their room at home, and this one from Smiggle, reasonable at its original price of $4.95, but better still at its current bargain price of $2.50, is just the ticket.  I bought some (of course!).  You can (fingers crossed) find them at your local Smiggle shop (they were available online here but have sold out).  Might also be handy if you want a library year planner (I use the teachers' credit union freebie in my office, as it has NSW government school terms/hols etc).  If you miss out this year, worth remembering for next year.

I was going to fossick about online for a year planner for them, but that would have to be printed on A4 and put together, so this (which has some colour) is excellent.  We will be sitting down with various coloured highlighters and pencils and the assessment schedule, so each student will make this planner their own.  Then they'll have to take a photo of it on a wall at their home, just to show me that it's doing its Visible job...



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