Creating an engaging unit...?

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by peachacid, Nov 4, 2013.

  1. peachacid

    peachacid Companion

    Sep 26, 2008
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    Nov 4, 2013

    I have four classes I teach a day, and each is different. First/second I have an enthusiastic group of eighth graders...third/fourth I have mostly tenth graders who are doing a unit on the Holocaust. Sixth/seventh I have seventh graders who are reading the Giver and doing a unit concurrently on utopian societies. Then eighth/ninth I have a group of mostly tenth graders who are mostly ESL. They're so completely disengaged...I've tried a few different units and they just...don't want to do anything.

    They're not beginning ESL but they need many things translated, so that is part of the problem. They're in the class in the first place because their reading scores are low.

    I want to create/start a unit that will be engaging for them...I want it to be something I'm interested in as well, since I have them at the end of the day, and I don't have a prep, so by that time I'm tired.

    Any ideas? It can be literally anything for which there is a book of some sort...informational or fictional. What have you had success with for your disengaged students?
  3. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

    Sep 7, 2010
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    Nov 4, 2013

    Touching Spirit Bear by Ben Mikaelson is a great novel I loved using with my eighth-graders when I taught middle school. The reading level is appropriate for middle and early HS with support for your ESLs on some of the vocabulary. It is very engaging and interesting for students this age, especially since it addresses issues like bullying, abuse, and justice which are relevant to students at this age level. It lends itself to some great creative projects and assessments, too! Let me know if you decide to use it or have any questions.

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