Friday, November 2, 2012


Many of you are aware of all the changes in education. For the classroom, that means a new focus on more complex reading and writing, digging deeper into relevant and valid facts. We are implementing the Common Core State Standards that Washington State has adopted. Because of the focus on more complex texts and critical thinking, our middle school has adopted a Genius Hour Project time. This allows each class to focus on longer projects, such as deeper research in social studies and lab sessions in math and science.  For language arts it means a time to research and learn a topic of interest to each student, thereby applying the needed strategies of the Common Core. It also allows them the opportunity to learn and  grow in ways that meet their needs as they focus on topics of interest. It helps them to show their genius.

Genius Hour Time also helps students and teachers to connect in ways that build better relationships; it lets students use their strengths and interests to complete projects, which adds insight into how each student works and learns. This helps teachers plan better, and helps us know the students better.

What have students been interested in studying?

Our first set of "interest" questions included:

  • What are history and rules of stick games?
  • When did basketball start?  What is the history?
  • What is marine life?
  • What are sea creatures lives like?
  • Why did Chernobyl have a meltdown?
  • Is life on mars?
  • What are the most expensive shoes in the world?
  • How can I make a paper plane that flew well.
  • What is Photography?
  • I was wondering about why people took these picture, and what is about? I was looking to see if it can explain why people liked to take pictures of interesting things, that you have to think outside of the box to see new things.
  • I wanted to learn about the Northern lights and how they are made . 
  • What are the rules of hockey.What Ii was wondering about was how the refs are better than the refs in the nfl when the good refs were on strike.
  • What are the rules of basketball? The answer that I was looking for was the dribbling, passing, the lines, coaches, the reff and the score board .............  and more. 
  • How do artists share their work and make money?
  • Who made or invented the first jet car?
In these questions you can see the beginning of careers: coaches, referees, historians, scientists, fashion, astronauts, photographers, artists, prototype designers.

So not only are we searching out our interests and applying the CCSS, we are also broadening our knowledge base of possibilities in the future.  We are adding to our "Genius."

What do you think? How do you add genius to the world?

This is a school related site so please respect others and comment appropriately. Please contact Ms Edwards if you have any questions or need to report any inappropriate activity. Thank you. Reflect Curiosity and Wonder... Go boldly and scatter seeds of kindness...

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Please remember this is a family and school related site. Please post and comment appropriately. Please contact Ms Edwards if you have any questions or to report any inappropriate activity. Thank you. sheri at nsdeagles dot org