Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Reflections on Story

It seems that story is always a more challenging sense to discuss with the students. I think one of the reasons is that we ask the kids to stick to Story rather than bring in the other senses and secondly, their definition of story is often limited. I really appreciate our outside guests coming into stir the pot and get the kids thinking. So a BIG thank you to Tim Stahmer, Sharon Peters, and Jim Gates.

Period 2 had a good discussion but I expected a lot more from them. This class tends to be the best at coming into the inner circle and yet so few participants actually came into the conversation. My hope is that they recognize this and remember that the focus of fishbowl is on the conversation not the blogging. The blogging is just an extension of the inner circle which can go in many ways. I don’t know if Story was just that challenging for them, but I feel like they missed out on some key aspects towards Story. On a positive note, I did hear from them that they are starting to see more story in their math and science classes whereas last year, this was a major area of discontent for the “right brainers.” I will be anxious to read their feedback about the fishbowl and areas for improvement. I also didn’t think my inner circle was as prepared as they should have been. Kids didn’t recall what they had signed up for, and what their role was to be. Maybe I need to post the list online versus just keeping it in class.

Period 5 was better in some aspects- there was more movement into the inner circle, but they still lacked the Big Picture behind Story. Also, the conversation on some aspects was inappropriate and disappointing. It became a teaching and learning moment for the student and my self. One thing it makes me think about is how far do you let things go before you step in? Do we need to revisit the purpose behind fishbowling and what are the expectations? Or do you simply remove him/her from the situation so that they understand the responsibility that is handed to them when they fishbowl? These are some things I definitely need to talk to the class about and get their feedback on. I also need to discuss the difference between being passionate about something and being over the top. Like I said before, this was a learning day for me and hopefully the students and I walked away from today with some new knowledge and some good questions to ask of one another.

I guess I have pretty high expectations for these fishbowls always hoping to walk away from the conversation with ideas I have never thought of before. I really did walk away so amazed and proud with our conversation with Daniel Pink, but I think the kids weren’t as prepared for this conversation as they could have been. The students who are leading the discussion need their questions out and ready to go as well as making sure they are quality questions. Two, students need to go between the inner and outer circle. Maybe we need to go back to blogger to make this happen. Three, I need to revisit what is appropriate on the blog. I just want to keep pushing these kids to do their best. I know they can all do more than what they did today.

15 comments:

bridgetL said...

I thought that the fishbowl was one of our worst so far to be really honest. The inner circle was pretty good and discussed well, but the blog did not. We didn't talk much about the deeper overall aspects of the chapter. Instead, we talked a lot about the surface issues. I think there were lots of great questions that were posed, but we failed to take them to the level they could have been. We talked about un-important things like politics. While politics do connect to story, we got way too far into it to the point where it was no longer even connected to story. I was definately guilty of this myself, especially on the political issue. Looking back I wish that I had taken some of the great questions a bit deeper. Next week I will pay a lot of attention to both the quality and content of what I am discussing.

Megg2012 said...

Honestly, I was just a little bit dissapointed with the conversation yesterday. I thought that we were going in loops. We overdiscussed things, telling personal expierience after personal expierience. I think that to benefit my learning, only a couple examples will be needed to fully explain and cover the information. I know that "jobs" such as presenter and discusser arn't that important pertaining to the discussion, but I think that the presenters wern't stepping up to the plate, while some did outstanding, others did not put in any questions at all, which was a little dissapointing. I don't want to sound harsh or mean, I think we just need to learn from our mistakes and move on, and have an awesome fishbowl next week!

kailynw2012 said...

I was late to the fish bowl, but as an inner circle person, I thought it went really well. There were no huge pauses and the conversation kept moving. I thought that we covered a lot of ground. By the end we still had topics to discuss, which I thought was a good sign. However, although there were a few times when people became passionate about what they were saying, the whole conversation was not like that. Sometimes it felt like we were talking, rather then discussing. This is something we can work on. Otherwise I felt that it went really well.

kaelib2012 said...

I think the fishbowl went really well yesterday, we got to talking about lots of different, interesting things. Story is my favorite of the five senses, so it was especially interesting for me. The only problem was, just like last time, we keep talking about the same things over and over and have a hard time moving from topic to topic. I would say it was better than last time, but we can still work on getting better about changing topics when needed

jordang2012 said...

I feel that the fishbowl yesterday went well for the most part. The Inner Circle was good, and they all seemed to understand the topic at hand. The Outer Circle left much more to be desired. We all got off topic plenty of times, and we all did not seem to really have read the chapter well. Especially when we started talking about Obama, then Mrs. Smith had to stop us and keep us on topic. Other than that, it went well.

lsadler2012 said...

Overall I thought the inner circl conversation went ok. It felt at times a little redundant like we were covering the same material over and over. I think we did highlight some great aspects of story however. Story in my opinon was a difficult chapter to some up, and we kept focusing on the most obvious parts in the book. From what I saw on the cover it live therer were some great conversation and comments. I'm looking foward to being on the cover it live for the next fishbowl.

katiez2012 said...

Ello. I thought that the fishbowl that we had yesterday was kind of lame and off topic. I thought that the inner circle did a much better job than the people that were live blogging though. We were bringing up topics that had nothing to really do with story and what we needed to be focusing. But don't get me wrong there were stil some great conversations and ideas going on. I think that our fishbowls are getting better and better each time, but we for sure need to work on them alot more.

carolineb2012 said...

I thought that the Inner Circle’s fishbowl was really good. It made me want to get out of my chair and join, and at times I got so excited that I forgot what I had to say and I had a little trouble getting the words out. The Outer Circle was not that great. At times we had good conversations and we had good things to say, however, people were bringing up topics completely unrelated to story and at one point, I had to remind them that this is not a political debate. Which I could have done a little more politely, I’m apologize. It just makes me frustrated when people try to bring politics into school. Discuss it on your own time please! Overall, it was an ok fishbowl, with good and bad elements, as always.

PaulAB2012 said...

I dont really know about this fischbowl. I thought it was pretty good (most of the conversation was atleast fairly interesting) and some decent things were said. However I do not think everyone prepared as well as they should have which was dissapointing because this seemed like it could have been one of our best fischbowls. I don't feel like we really learned anything or discovered any incredible new ideas. I agree with Miss Smith that part of the problem is that story is difficult to discuss for some reason... Overall I think everyone needs to come in with strong interesting thoughts and ideas for us to produce a great fischbowl.
The other bad thing was the live blogging. Usually the live blogging is fantastic but I did not feel like it was very good yesterday. People kept getting hung up on things and their was nothing interesting said... Overall this fischbowl was not bad but it definitely could have been better.

samis2012 said...

I thought the fishbowl went well, but it was not one of our better discussions. On the blog the conversations stayed on topic, for the most part, but then one discussion started on politics with no obvious ties to story. The inner circle had some good points but, from what I heard, it kept going in loops and coming back to one point that had been made earlier in the fishbowl. Otherwise, it was nice discussion, not one of our best, but still an improvement from when we started.

Zivenc2012 said...
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leahf2012 said...

I agree with Bridget. I thought that our fishbowl was absolutely awful. I think the inner circle could have dove further into story and I felt like they were just skimming the surface. We were too immersed in some aspects of politics. I think our biggest downfall in the class is lack of preparation, too. I think we really need to read, not just read, if that makes sense. Next week, I'm going to encourage myself to step out of the outer circle.

TaylorG2012 said...

I would have to agree with Bridget about our fishbowl, because our inner circle did well but the outside circle did pretty poorly with the blog. It seemed that the inner circle kept moving with some very good questions that made everyone think, and I actually got to listen to the inner circle a lot more than normal. From that, I personally tried my best to connect my blog comments with the inner circle's discussion, but that wasn't a very successful attempt. Also, I thought that some people still do no respect the rules of live blogging, and just blogging in general, so it made me more afraid of saying my opinion because I didn't want to be attacked on the blog, and the blog wasn't very interesting anyways so it was hard to keep going.

jonathanp2012 said...

I thought that the fishbowl went good yesterday. I thought that people did very well explaining the idea of story and how it affects our everyday life. I thought that the inner and outer circle made good connections and conversation. I thought that the inner circle sometimes didn't got off a subject that they were talking about though but overall everyone did a pretty good job.

Zivenc2012 said...

I think that the story fishbowl yesterday went somewhat well. On the blog we did get off task while talking about Obama. Unfortunately, we ended up so off task that Mrs. Smith had to intervene. However, our discussion was broad and I think it encompassed all of ideas in the story chapter and a few new ones. For example, Caroline brought up story relating to history which was a whole new take on story for me. Clearly, the fishbowl had some good moments and some bad.