I touted the joys of sixth grade last week, but I have to give eighth graders a doff of my cap today. Thanks, kids.
There are only two of them; that alone puts them under scrutiny in a way that would never happen were we in a “real” classroom. I think about that every time we meet, how annoying it must sometimes be for them to see perky me first thing in their morning. (In pre-Covid school, predictably that first block was always a challenge with ubiquitous big yawns and glassy stares.) Truthfully adolescents often would rather hide than be noticed. There is no escape in this set-up, but I digress.
Cue the Global Read-Aloud Kahoot. A wonderful, generous STEM teacher from Canada, set up a global Kahoot. Do you Kahoot? I never had. At the end of a section, as I understood the directions he sent to everyone wishing to participate, he would send a quiz for the kids to take regarding the most basic novel aspects. They’d play; teachers would send results; qualifying students would make the “Global Leaderboard.” Sounds like a manageable plan.
I’m a Quizlet aficionado, so I was game, but I enlisted my dynamic eighth grade duo for a test run before the “youngers.” We got to the site together. We signed in successfully. I started the game, so far so good, right? But I forgot to share my screen. I had also muted my audio because the Kahoot opening music is fall-on-your-sword inspiring. There I am in my little bubble, playing the game, while my students did….What exactly? Their scores were mounting as I watched. Tral-la-la…
I found out after I finished and returned to our “room” that they’d not seen the game but played charades and waited for me to return. I couldn’t hear them, couldn’t see them —while I remained ensnared in my own little world. Upshot? Disaster or Success? Copious laughter for us all in the early a.m.
What did we learn today? So much about letting go and the power of making a fool of oneself and being able to roll with it. Maybe I’m finally growing up.
Thanks, eighth graders. You are Leaderboard material as far as I can tell.