BGL is very sad to say goodbye to one of our best DL teachers, Teacher Christal. She has worked with us for the past six years and has been an invaluable member of our team. This blog post is not only her farewell but an illustration of her talent in the classroom and the passion with which she approaches her craft. She will be missed, and we wish her well!
The following is a report from her:
Here at BGL we love assessments that aren’t spelled t-e-s-t. We believe that creative projects can most often better show what a student has learned than any single high-stakes exam. Along those lines, many of our final projects – like this one at the end of a unit on modern countries of the world – take the form of presentations. Many of the students in test-obsessed Taiwan might find an exam to be an easier endeavor, but speaking in front of group is a great way to improve an acquired language.
Our first writing project in 7th grade at Tsai Hsing this year was to create a PowerPoint presentation using the fantasy genre. I read them a fantasy story called, “My Father’s Dragon.” This story allowed them to learn the different components that a fantasy story must contain. After we read the story, the students worked in class to create their own fantasy stories. They worked independently and in collaborative settings. I then had video conferences with my students to go over their writing projects.
The next writing project involved writing a travel book. We first read a travel book created by our BGL staff about a Tsai Hsing student traveling through the United States. This allowed students to see the structure of a travel book. Students then selected a location and wrote a fiction, non-fiction, or informational travel book. They included five components in their presentations: introduction, history, culture, personal thoughts and conclusion. This project was also research-based, so students had to provide the websites where they obtained their information.
Students also presented their travel books to the class. Their stories were from places such as the Republic of the Congo, California, Australia, Transylvania, and Paris. Some students shared personal family trips and were excited to share their adventures!
Writing can be a challenge for most students; the key is to make it engaging. My students were able to work together to create some beautiful writing projects this past year. Please take a look at some of the best ones here: