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Course Guide
By Mark Heintz
Sep 9, 2019

Day 20

Student contribution by Anonymous

Overview of the Period

Today, we codified the the first unit. Since the students have been doing more independent inquires and the course starts in the year 1200, there is a lot of information that feels disjointed. In the past, the unit that we start in was one larger unit that covered 600-1450. Now, it is two units that cover 1200-1450.

 At first, I didn’t think starting in the year 1200 would be a problem.  However, I found that the students needed a lot more context to be able to truly understand the concepts. Luckily, I planned to spend a few days going over the course guide with the students. Unfortunately, I didn’t plan on spending as much time as we are. Which is turning out to be okay.

The language used in the course guide is very specific. I’m hoping to have the students familiarize themselves with the descriptive words that the College Board uses. Some of that language is fragmented, dominated, innovation, continuity, and entities. Those words typically aren’t a part of their vernacular. 

How have you grown as a learner?

I feel like I’m learning a lot. I know because I’m doing well on the quizzes and I feel like I’m understanding what the empires do.

I’ve grown as a learner by being able to connect the countries to the empire/religion. I like how we get our lectures online so that I have time to process it for myself and try to understand it by myself.

My Response

I ended up spending a considerable amount of time working through the language with them. The students have learned so much and been able to demonstrate that learning in amazing ways. The first Launch Cycle was amazing!

However, the students were confused about how all of the civilizations pieced together. It’s always a problem when teaching history.  The nature of covering multiple civilizations makes it hard to stitch together in a cohesive way for students to understand. The time period we currently in is slight worse, since the world is not deeply connected by the same global events.

I’m not in love with how i did a lot of thinking for them today. I essentially spoon feed them the material. But, the students were asking for it and discussion led to great questions. I don’t do this process often, but I feel that students were less confused at the end of the period. They had a greater sense of what they need to know and how the content is connected.

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