“…I need to express myself!”

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Today, as the last 9th grader in 4th/5th block finished presenting his i movie,  a student from the back yelled “Ms. Sanders can I PLEASEEEE (for added dramatic effect) show my i movie again, a lot of people were gone yesterday and I need to express myself!” I was so taken back from his passion to want to show his project again and the way he chose to make his case (that he NEEDED to EXPRESS HIMSELF) that all I could reply with was, what did you just say?? Now, normally when I say this in class they know that someone has said something negative like “I can’t do this” or “this is boring” because they know that can’t is not an optional word in 104 and that being bored is relative…because I have repeated that phrase over and over daily… I am trying a little positive reverse psychology with this statement…I’ll let you how it goes…anddd OK back to the need for expression story…I quickly recovered from my “what did you just say” statement and replied with,” well if you have to express yourself then I guess we need to watch it again!” Now, did this get us slightly off of our time schedule yes, but was it worth it…without a doubt. This story is relevant for several reasons in my life and class right now for which I will now list. #1 Anytime any student wants to re-present anything this has got to be a good sign and even though my porcelain Buddha flew off my desk this week and broke this one moment made the whole week seem to shine. It was obvious the student was proud of his work and wanted to bask in the glory of his hard work, so hooray students being proud of what they are doing! #2 This particular student also went from being disruptive and uninterested to engaged and focused in a matter of a day. Once he realized he had full autonomy over his project he quickly learned how to navigate through building his movie, and would continually help other students who were stuck on photo transitions, or changing their music, etc. The pride I felt when he came to my desk after the first showing of his movie and said “I did good didn’t I Ms. Sanders” not in the form of a question, but in the form of a statement because he knew he worked hard and it turned out well was enough for me to be a believer in the idea that as long as students are engaged and understand what they are doing they will be successful. His eagerness to express himself yet again only further solidifies this truth. Do I think that technology, music and photography helped?? Most definitely, they are the generation of all things bright, loud, and fast so it is no wonder that this project has become such a success but I still believe as long as a classroom is constantly working and knows WHY they are working and HOW it is going to help them in their lives, the need to express themselves will still be felt. What are our students, children, and future if they aren’t a beautiful bunch of expressions? 


…And since we are on this expression kick, the rest of this post will be devoted to the proud  Mexican population at our school. Today, September 16, 2010, is the 200th anniversary  of Mexico’s independence from Spain or “Biecentenario Mexico.” So happy El Grito de Independencia de Mexico and enjoy the awesome expression of these THS students today, imagine if we all had this pride for our school and nation! 

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Our Quote of the Week: “Be a Possibilitarian. No matter how dark things seem to be or actually are, raise your sights and see possibilites- always see them, for they are always there.” – Norman Vincent Peale
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