Saturday, December 19, 2015

Tutorials and Another Big Chart

We spent the last few weeks of the semester tracking our progress differently. Rather than rely upon the Tutorials document, in which individual students' work was listed on a spreadsheet, we put up a huge tracker called the Avoision Chart (the word, coined by Mike Paskus '15, is a combination of 'avoid' and 'evasion'--the point being to avoid panic as Exhibitions approach).

The Avoision Chart is simple. On the x-axis are two dozen distinct tasks, including six writing prompts, four Identity Project tasks, four Identity Exhibition tasks, two books to read, six America (Abridged)-related tasks, and some science, work crews, portfolio, and art responsibilities. On the y-axis is each student's name. This public accounting helps in a few different ways. One, it's a constant visual reminder. Two, students can help each other out as they see fit. Three, big deadlines (Exhibition, Project, America) are broken down into manageable parts. Four, it is eminently satisfying to cross items off.

The other Big Chart, located on the opposite wall, tracked our overarching plans for the months of September, October, November, and December. Review it here in this September post:

That has been erased, soon to be replaced by a similarly structured Big Chart for January, February, March, April, May, and June. Look for that in an early January post, soon after our return to school on January 4. Until then, enjoy the holidays, and let's raise the highest of hopes for 2016.

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