This post is in response to Dr. Stearns’ prompt as to what we’ve learned in doing our Unit Plan. After finishing what I consider to be a very rough draft, I am now beginning to understand that this unit plan will never be complete, but that’s a good thing. It will always be a work in progress because we never know what will happen in our classrooms. There is no way anyone can say, ” I have the plan to end all plans.”
As I review my work, I realize how much I followed along with old-school thought. I don’t offer my students much choice as far as reading goes and this is an issue that will have to be addressed in revision. I actually feel kind of stupid because I forgot such simple things as Literature Circles, which Ray H. mentioned he used in his Unit Plan. I have plenty of YA books to use, and I have them in my further reading section, but I don’t manage to integrate them into the unit. I stick with the classics and this is my major problem. I can’t help but feel like I’ve somehow managed to make Comedy boring. Literature circles would definitely help liven up my classroom.
As far as my best work goes, I feel I hit the nail on the proverbial head with the kick-off activity. I had previously posted a stand-up comedy routine by Brian Regan which I was going to use, but after thinking and re-thinking, I decided on this clip from Demetri Martin (comedian, writer for the Daily Show and Late Night with Conan O’Brien):
I feel that this would be a perfect introduction to my unit and it would give students some insight into the creative process of writing (not just Comedy, but writing in general). As a class we would watch the whole performance from beginning to end (this clip is the finale), but within these 5 minutes, Martin touches on the essence of Comedy and I would be really interested in seeing student responses.
How is everyone else doing?