Showing posts with label high school english teacher. Show all posts
Showing posts with label high school english teacher. Show all posts

11.10.22

National Coming Out Day is October 11th: Here's is How One Teacher in Queens Talks About Coming Out as Both a Personal Journey and in Their Role as a Teacher

For National Coming Out Day, Tuesday, October 11, 2022, the LGBT Network sent me a box of pride rainbow and trans ribbons to distribute to students in my school to support "coming out" against violence, discrimination, and abuse against members of our community. Here's more tea: 
Wearing Blue Greig Relaxes Somewhere in South Louisiana Circa 2010

The LGBT Network distributed ribbons to schools to celebrate National Coming Out Day on Tuesday, October 11, 2022.
Coming out as a Teacher
I came out as a teacher in 2017. I remember the moment — it was on a school trip to Nantucket. On a whim, a group of kids, a few other teachers, and I went to an author talk: the novelist Benjamin Alire Sáenz, who wrote Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe, was speaking at the Nantucket theater. Mr. Sáenz spoke about writing young adult fiction, a term, he said, didn't apply to him, but apparently, young adults find his novels appealing. I asked a question about coming out, and I said, "As a gay kid growing up, we did not have representation of gay, lesbian, or trans youth, and I told him how grateful I was for this generation that is changing.

Since then, I have been out as a teacher. I have helped start a GSA club at my school, and I included Sáenz's book in the English Langauge Arts curriculum for our teachers. I even created an elective course, "History Comes Out," where we explored biographies of queer figures in history and pop culture. 

Not that I was in the closet, necessarily, before that time, in Nantucket, but I feel like I kept my sexuality to myself and did not talk about it in the classroom, sticking mainly to the role of "single, guy, teacher vibes." I was out to my close circle of co-workers and family, but I bifurcated who I was from my role as a teacher.

Now, the fact that I am a gay male in New York City is not a huge deal. We are legion. But, the number one reason I am vocal about my sexual orientation and gender expression is that I want to normalize the experience for kids who might need or want a different kind of adult. I feel like, sometimes, I have to conform to some heteronormative script that I have concocted in my head. And it has taken a while; I am still learning that I can just be myself.

Growing Up Gay
I grew up as a gay boy in South Louisiana in the 1990s. It was like going to a crawfish boil and telling everyone you don’t eat seafood. They’d look at you like you just grew two heads. 

Now — as an adult — I’m out and proud. So shut your face if you don’t like it. Just kidding! Kinda.

National Coming Out Day

Today is National Coming Out Day. Thank you, @lgbtnetwork and @nycschools, for supporting my school @gardenschoolnyc and @gardenstudents with LGBTQ+ ribbons. The kids who participated love love loved it. 

Here are details from the day: 
A twelve-year-old girl came to me with a drawing she had made on her art 🖼️ app of me as a woman. She was so proud to show me. It made me appreciate my feminine side. A boy talked to me about transphobia and discussed strategies to combat it. And @bats4k gave a heartfelt speech at our school's weekly morning meeting. At dismissal, one of my students was sure to say, “I wore my ribbon all day!”

I am one proud teacher, gay man, gender-affirming, inclusivity-loving individual. Sprinkles!


#gaypride #gayteachersofinstagram #gay #schools #nationalcomingoutday #queer #trans #kids #lgbtqia

5.9.22

How Kahoot! Can Engage Students In The Classroom (Written by a Kahoot! Certified Educator with Examples)

In this post, I write about how teachers, specifically high school English and Humanities teachers, can use the Kahoot! platform to enhance their lessons and engage students.

I use Kahoot! in the high school classroom as a formative assessment. It's a fun way to start a lesson, end a lesson, review for a test, or drum up a bit of healthy competition. Find my Kahoot! profile here! 

What is Kahoot!?
Engaging students in the classroom can be challenging in a world where educational content is increasingly delivered online. Kahoot! is a game-based learning platform that makes it easy to create, play, and share learning games.

Kahoot! is a gamified quiz platform  it can be used for any purpose where there is a question and an answer, making it perfect for teachers and trivia masters at your local pub or family trivia nights.

Who Started Kahoot!
Kahoot! was created by Johan Brand, Jamie Brooker, and Morten Versvik in Oslo, Norway. The quiz is based on research by Professor Alf Inge Wang and his colleagues at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). 

What makes Kahoot! so enticing is that it's fun to use — and people can join Kahoot! with any device connected to the Internet. The platform takes the power of the question and couples it with competition, points, sound effects — and more.

How Van Kahoot! Be Used in the Classroom?
Sample of a Kahoot game in action.
Kahoot! is a great way to engage students 
in the classroom, especially in the humanities. Games can be played on any topic, and there is a vast library of existing games to choose from. You can also create your own games.

Kahoot! is not just for high school students – it can be used in any classroom or course. It is also a great way to study for exams or to review for a test.

If you are a teacher, you can use Kahoot! to create engaging educational content for your students. If you are a student, you can use Kahoot! to study for your courses or review exams. Either way, Kahoot! is a great way to learn.

The Benefits of Using Kahoot! in the Classroom
I am teaching my Eighth grade English Language Arts students a unit on Plato's Allegory of the Cave. It's a popular lesson I sell on Teachers Pay Teachers and on Amazon Ignite! I even have a free version. In the lesson, we wonder about Plato's view of reality; the essential question is, what is real? 

What teachers have said about my digital educational resources:
Love this product! Very thought-provoking. I used this distance learning with students in zoom class.
— Aron H. 
Creating a Kahoot! Course for Plato's Allegory of the Cave
Kahoot! Courses are a fantastic way to organize
gamified activities around a singular topic
 here is one I made on Plato's Cave. Check it out. 

I aligned sixteen different Kahoots to our learning objectives. The lesson plan came first — the intellectual work was the most challenging- putting it together. So with Kahoot! I was able to make a course based on all of my hard work. And voilà. It has made the unit so much more engaging for my students! 

How to get started with Kahoot! in the classroom
Kahoot! is free to start  and if you like it and want to create and access more sophisticated content, Kahoot! has several different-priced tiered plans.

Full disclosure 
 I am a verified creator on the Kahoot! Marketplace.


28.7.22

Teaching Peter and the Wolf: 2006 Oscar Winning Suzie Templeton Short Film

In this post, I talk about teaching the short film "Peter and the Wolf" in my Eighth Grade English Language Arts class in Queens.
Mr. Roselli's students attend his 8th Grade English Language Arts class in Queens
A typical day of learning in Mr. Roselli's English Language Arts classroom.

I Needed to Teach Something Quickly; I Chose "Peter and the Wolf"
It's interesting how I come across content to teach. Usually, deciding what to teach is not a problem because I spend a good chunk of the weeks leading up to the new school year mapping out my courses. However, this past year, teaching my Eighth graders, there was a day that I needed to fill with an engaging lesson. We had just completed a forty-day mythology unit. I say "forty days" as if we were in the desert or something, but it was forty discrete lessons, each about forty-five minutes in length. So I had a "free day" before we started our new unit. So, hence, Peter and the Wolf!

Suzie Templeton Short Film "Peter and the Wolf"
Suzie Templeton is a gifted director, and her animated short film, "Peter and the Wolf," is based on Sergei Prokofiev's famous score. The movie is only about twenty-five minutes, perfect for my lesson. Also, because of its fairy tale elements, it fits nicely with a unit on mythology.

Do Now: Setting a Work of Literature to Music
I like to get my kids' gears turning, so as they entered the class during the passing period, I asked them if they were to set a story or play or myth that they had read to music what would it be. I was hoping for something like Orpheus and Eurydice set to "Like a Bridge Over Troubled Water," but I got Daphne and Apollo set to A$AP Ferg. I'll take what I can get. Also, I was keen to set my lesson to a reading standard that states students should analyze a representation of a subject or a pivotal scene in two different artistic mediums (Reading Literature Standard RL.9-10.7).

Watching the Movie and Answering Questions
We watched the movie in class -- and I was surprised by how quickly they got into the story. I think what works is that the animation is so unique. It's not the standard, glossy Pixar style my kids are familiar with. It's a quirky, stop-motion animation-style feature. And the kids noticed the exciting way the animators brought the story alive, zooming in on the setting, a small town nestled in a somewhat cold rural landscape. The character of Peter is sufficiently adolescent, and the Grandfather and the boy's big fat cat serve as comic relief. There also isn't a lot of dialogue, so you have to pay attention to the visuals to follow the story's narrative pacing.

While watching the movie, students had to complete a worksheet, which included sixteen "right-there" viewing comprehension questions. It's just a way to keep them focused, and later, they turn it in as part of their grade for the lesson. As a teacher, I learned long ago that doing activities where students have to write and show their thinking is valuable. Not only is it an excellent way to show what you are doing in your classroom, but it also serves as a snapshot of students' overall thinking. I also like to use the Adobe Scan app to capture their work. So I have an archive of sorts.

Discussing Foreshadowing, Visual Imagery, Identity, and Other Themes
After watching the film, we talked about the movie. The first big English Language Arts point I wanted to convey was foreshadowing. And the kids definitely picked up on that one. There are images and references to wolves from the beginning, opening shot, and end. And another interesting discussion we had was why Peter let the wolf go in the end. I received several answers, but I remember one of the boys in my class commenting on how Peter understood the wolf. And I agreed, which led to a discussion about identity. If I say so myself, very much in keeping with my students' socio-psycho development.

Writing Activity: What Message Does the Movie Convey? 
And finally, at the end of class, I told the students to pull out their notebooks, and they wrote independently about what they thought the film's message was, and I made them include details from the movie to support their answers. Having completed the viewing questions helped to jog their memories. As they left the classroom, they had to turn in all of their written work, and I had them each tell me orally the gist of their writing exercise.
Finally . . .
Do you teach short films in your classroom? How does it work for you? I'd love to hear your comments.

10.7.21

Teacher's Summer Diary #2398: On the Tedium of Making Educational Digital Content (And Why a Walk, a Stretch, and a Sip of Water is Essential)

In this post, I talk about making educational resources for the middle and high school classroom and why distraction is my friendly passenger (although they don't always feel so friendly).

Author as a Gif
As per my last email (don't you hate it when you receive a message that begins that way) — or, shall I say, post — I've learned some new tips. First — there is beauty in
"Wish You Were Here  B.O.B.B.Y" Spray-painted on the side of a freight train car (pictured somewhere in Queens, New York
A message spray-painted on a side of
a train car.

small details. But my iPhone finds it challenging to capture the subtle beauty, so you'll have to contend with the bigger picture.

I read a quote today that I like — about achievement — "Before the gates of excellence, the high gods have placed sweat.”

I'm attempting to complete a monumental task this week, and I feel overwhelmed. I want to expand the teaching resources I created under my @stonesoferasmus brand — I have to go and proofread my inventory of 137 digital downloads I've created. I like the “making part” of the process — using design skills and creating incredible resources that middle and high school students can use. It's just very time-consuming. So to inspire me, I take long walks — hence the photos you see — and eat healthy — and stretch. Also — I got a bigger monitor for my computer. OMG. Having a large screen to work on makes a huge difference when creating digital stuff. OMG.

My goal is to have 200 products reviewed and created by the end of Summer. And on top of that, I'm taking a class on Special Education and Differentiation at Hunter College. The course is good — it solidifies some things I already knew about teaching and has already given me good ideas to move forward. Next year I'm teaching a section of Eighth Grade English, a World Religions class, a New York City history class — paired with Tenth and Eleventh graders in a combined section. Whew. I better get to planning. But. Oh. I see a bird in a tree. Ohh. Let me check this out. *Loses thirty minutes*. By the way, @kfs0520, is the last picture in this post an excellent example of Nantucket Red? Inquiring minds want to know.
Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh, Twelfth, Higher Education, Adult Education, Homeschooler, Staff, Not Grade Specific - TeachersPayTeachers.com

28.6.21

When You’re at a Crossroads: Take It from Me, It’s Okay to Feel Lost (Notes from the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest)

In this post, a high school English teacher gets lost in the forest of northwest Washington.
I am stuck at a crossroads — which way to go? Following the course of the Foss River in the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, I’m allowed to be lost, a wanderer. I’m happy I found a rock to sit on so I can gather my thoughts, drink some water (from the mountain creek, of course). If you don’t hear from me, it means I’ve taken up residence in the forest. I’ll come out when I’m dang ready.
Foss River
The Foss River

12.5.21

Why Wednesday Is the Day of the Week to Send Messages (Because of Woden, or, as the Greeks Call Him, Hermes)

Wednesday is named for Woden — the Norse parallel for the Greek and Roman messenger god Hermes.

In Jackson Heights, Queens

Ephemera
I’m obsessed with messages, epistolary novels, and journeys and undertakings. I never 👎 skip by a note or love letter. Even a torn letter I see on the sidewalk. I'll pick it up. And save it. And I love to eat tears and swallow joy.

My friends say I’m constantly flexing. My students want the school year to end. I’m listening to lots of books on tape and cooking lots of sausages and egg salad.

Achievements
I’m proud of my student @jukycheng, who got accepted into a Summer engineering program at NYU Tandon in Brooklyn. Congrats, Juky!

And I’m also excited for the Summer—those dog days. But I’m into May. With its warm afternoons and occasional showers.

Let's Chat!
How are you holding up? Need a hug? Here’s one. Need a nudge? Here’s one? Need a ride on a white swan? I don’t have that, but drop me a message if you want to chat about YA novels and the best place to walk in New York City.


Mr. Greig Roselli, Teacher, Writer, and Philosophy Sprinkles Maker!

9.4.21

On Positivity and How I Am Dealing With Teaching and Promoting Anti-Hate (#stopasianhate #stopblackhate #love)

Girl Fish GIF
"Girrrrrrllllllll!" is my general mood as of late.

Two people told me today, “You are always so positive.” The first was a colleague — and they always encourage me to be myself. The second was a student —

Greig Roselli wears a yellow mask in Jackson Heights, Queens

.... she came to me after class and was like, “Thank you for always being positive.” And I was like, “Well. I can embrace my sadness. But it's important not get distracted by the negative.” Like. I mean — I'm not oblivious to the Rainbow of emotions. But I like to infuse joy, especially with adolescents. It is the way I connect, and it's the glue to keep a classroom together. That and reading, writing, and arithmetic.

Teachers Amira Esposito and Nancy Massand wear pink.
My two English colleagues and besties.

It’s been a stressful year — Covid-19. A disrupted school year. And a tragic time. George Floyd. Breonna Taylor. Say their names. And Asian Hate 😡. 


One of my kids said this week, “I don't like coming to school. I like school. It's just getting there. Should I bring mace?” I told him — “Your feelings are valid.” And we talked about strategies to signal for help if a hater ever comes at you. Pretend to talk on the phone. Don't travel alone or on a lonely street.

All this hate takes its toll. It's toxic.

What are you doing to help folks feel safe? What should we be doing? Am I right to spread positivity? Even when I'm sad or broken, or I feel like I can't find the energy to teach or do whatever. I got this.

Mr. Roselli and a student start class off with the high attitude
Start Class with the Right Attitude
Love you all!

12.3.21

A Year Ago Today: Going into Lockdown Because of the Coronavirus Outbreak in the United States (and the World)

Greig Roselli poses for a photograph in a back alley in Jackson Heights, Queens
Greig Roselli poses for the one year anniversary
of living through Covid-19 in these United States.

One Year Ago Today

Today is March 12th in the Year of Our Lord Twenty Twenty-One. Last year today, I was in a faculty meeting. “We’re not closing school,” they said. By Sunday, we were in lockdown. And the rest is history.

I feel like I’m living through a historic moment like folks who lived through the Great Depression and hoarded pennies in their mattresses. 

What Will Future Generations Say?

Future generations will ask, “What was

The Corner of 37th Avenue and 79th Street in Jackson Heights, Queens
On the corner of 37th
Avenue and 79th Street
 in Jackson Heights, Queens

the Twenty Twentys like?” My friend Amira’s child, who is now ten months old, will want to know what he did during the quarantine. “Mostly eat and sleep,” Mom will say. “But it was a long time before you saw real people besides the doctors who birthed you and us.” And Sam will say, “OK. I survived a global pandemic.”

Recognizing That This is a Deadly Virus

As of today, 532,466 people have died in the United States; and, worldwide over 2.5 million people have perished. I recognize I’m privileged because I’m vaccinated and generally healthy (although I need to lay off the potato chips and ranch dressing). The pandemic has disproportionately hit the most vulnerable of society. I realize I’m in-person with students — so there’s always a risk I can be infected. But think about folks who work essential jobs and live in small apartments where everyone is working, coming into contact with many people. I can slink away to the haven of a more-or-less safe space in my apartment.

I think this global crisis has revealed just how fragile the ties that bind are. I’m grateful for today. I mourn those lost to Covid-19, and I’m hopeful for the future.

Kristen Ahfeld waves for the camera in the courtyard of the Garden School in Jackson Heights, Queens
Kristen Ahfeld is a
First Grade Teacher in Queens.
How was your Covid-19 lockdown anniversary — and how are you coping? Let me know in the comments. ⁣

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#covidkindnesswes #covi̇dkindness #covıdkindness #covidkindnesseverydaychallenge #covidkindnessstories #covidkindnessplease #covidkindness🙏 #staysafe #covidkindness🙏🏽 #stayhome #covidkindness💙💛 #covidkindnessneeded #covidkindness❣️ #covidkindnesss #covidkindness🤟🏻🙏🏻❤️ #covidkindness1 #quarantine #covid #covid19 #covidkindnesses #socialdistancing #covidkindnesscookieproject #covidkindnessnailcollab #covidkindness❤️❤️ #love #covidkindnessau #covidkindnesswmbg #covidkindnessuhp #coronavirus #covidkindnessca

PDF for Printing

7.3.21

Subject: Hello, March! March is for Mars! And It's Springtime in TeacherLandia (And I Have a Freebie for You)

In this post, I talk about how I have been crazy obsessed with making mythology-related content for the middle and high school classroom.
Greig Roselli does a live video chat on WhatsApp
It's March, and I've been teaching 
either from home or in a classroom. Hey, Y'all!

March is For Mars, Right?

It's March. And what that means for me is that I get to ask my students, "What god from mythology is the month of March named for?" And, you know what? Don't feel bad if you can't immediately come up with the correct answer. It's one of those questions that is obvious once you know the answer. *Spoiler Alert*Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh, Twelfth, Higher Education, Adult Education, Homeschooler, Staff, Not Grade Specific - TeachersPayTeachers.com for stonesoferasmus The Greek god Mars (Or Ares in Latin). And I have a lesson for you. I have a freebie that helps students build vocabulary through Greek and Roman mythology. Myth is to Language what Recipes are to Food! You cannot have one without the other.

FREEBIE!: All About Mythology for the Middle and High School Set

I guess I am obsessed with myth. It's probably because mythology is just really cool, and I am determined to not make learning about myths just a Percy Jackson thing. Myths are actually exquisite artifacts to teach in High School (even though they get relegated to elementary and early middle school curricula). I just made a ton of myth-related resources in my Teachers Pay Teachers store. And to celebrate March and Spring (and the god Mars), I made my dazzling lesson on Prometheus totally free. So you can see a sneak peek of what I am doing in the realm of educational digital resources for middle and high school students. Some of the best things I have made related to mythology are designed for the late middle and high school classrooms. And I think that's really cool. And oh, if you are more of an Amazon person, I have a store there too!

Prometheus Bound for the Classroom

Prometheus Middle and High School Classroom Lesson Plan

It's based on the story of Prometheus, the Titan who befriended Zeus. His name means “forethought,” which is kinda funny only when you realize his brother Epimetheus's name means “afterthought.” This gets even funnier when you realize that according to the myth, Prometheus had the forethought to warn his brother, "OK! Zeus is going to gift you with a beautiful woman named Pandora! Don't accept!" But since he was an afterthought  when the time came  Zeus said, "OK. Here is a gift for you, Epimetheus." And the rest is history!

And Why New Orleans is a Decent Inspiration for Mythology

I am originally from New Orleans. It’s where I got my first jolt of mythology because during Mardi Gras season — all the Krewes are made up of references to Greek mythology. You have the Krewe of Orpheus and the Mystic Krewe of Momus and Comus and Rex (Latin, not Greek, I know). And having read lots of William Faulkner, you know life in the south can mirror a Greek tragedy (or comedy!).

       How do I keep it woke? How do I make ancient Greek or Latin myths relevant to living in the Americas in 2021? Easy — lots and lots of text-to-text and text-to-world connections. Did you know that March is named after a god? It's because of Greek and Norse mythology that the days of the weeks are what they are? The more you know, right?

So keep a lookout for a new product I am creating based on New Orleans, Mardi Gras, and Mythology!

Thanks for reading my blog. It's been a labor of love for over ten years. Can you believe it! XOXOXOXO

Greig Roselli (from Stones of Erasmus)



6.3.21

Another Day of Concurrent Teaching: Covid-19 Pandemic Teacher Journal #2

Get Lit
Mr. Roselli wears a "get lit" tee.

I teach teenagers concurrently in person and kids learning remotely. To build community, my co-teacher @amiraesposito5585 and I call the in-person kids Roomies and the distance learning kids, Zoomies. 

Roomies got a hard lifeBut not all the Roomies are complaining.


American teens aren’t reading less — they’re just reading fewer classics. They’re reading on their phones, on the Internet — listening to stories via audiobooks and podcasts. Literacy is changing, and I’m excited about it.

The tee-shirt reads, “Get lit.” Get it? I struggle with authenticity. How real is too real? Where do I go to find folks who look 👀 like me, act like me, think 🤔 like me? Literature. In my classroom. Young people. People who think differently. Radical openness. It’s something I teach. But it’s also the ultimate pleasure. Literature — it’s the best tea. And whether it’s Satan being emo in Paradise Lost or Rashad in American Boys (@jasonreynolds83) reflecting on his blackness in America or Felix in Felix Ever After (@kacen.callender) navigating high school as a trans boy in New York — characters in literature come alive for me.

5.11.20

Share Word Power With Students (Or, Watch a Frenetic Teacher Talk About Latin Roots)

In this quick post, I talk about how I teach the Latin root for "star" and how this root has permeated our language. Also, it is quite a rowdy lesson. Mainly because of me!
Word power-knowledge. I have way too much frenetic energy. And to think I was feeling vile about the proceedings of the day — until our Ninth Grade Writing class got my spirits up. After the first period today, I had thirty seconds, so Rajveer in Ninth Grade took this video of our discussion of the Latin root "aster-" or "astro-" (for star) and how it appears in the English words asteroid, asterisk, astronaut, disaster, and astronomy. Thanks to Ariadne for being the model student and Theo, Pema, Ryan, Mia, Luna, Lucas, and Ava for the inspiration. Tag, share, comment on, cast, or copy this video. It’s insane.
Teacher wears a mask in a classroom.
Mr. Roselli captures a selfie.

Foot on a desk
All in a day's work.

Aphrodite
Aphrodite as Depicted in Chalk on a Chalkboard

Athena
Athena with a shield.

Goddess
Just your garden variety love goddess.