I spent most of the day humming “Do You Hear the People Sing?” from Les Miserables after being asked to cover a world history class during my planning period. There were no lesson plans handy, but the kids were studying the French Revolution, so we read from the textbook and discussed modern parallels to the factors leading up to the revolution. We found connections to everything from Kent State to the Dust Bowl to Occupy Wall Street. After reading the description of Louis XV, I decided he sounded a lot like Jimmy Carter — which led to a conversation about why Carter was a good man but a fairly lousy president — and we questioned why France would have gotten involved in the American Revolution when the Colonies were English.
Considering the fact that I hadn’t studied the French Revolution since I was 14 and wasn’t particularly interested in it at the time, I thought the lesson went pretty well. Some of the kids wanted to sleep instead of participating, but several of them got into it, and a couple of boys were still talking about it when they got to my fifth-hour English class this afternoon. Mr. Oldani would have been proud….
I’m pretty amped about the project I’m planning to do in my classroom tomorrow. There’s a little railing around the inside of my classroom closet, so I bought some boards tonight at Lowe’s and had them cut to size so I can lay them across the railing to make a desperately needed storage shelf. The whole project cost less than $10 and should allow me to organize my closet and put away some things that are just cluttering up my classroom at the moment. I’ll try to get before-and-after shots of that project….