One of the best parts of being a teacher is the time we have (about every ten weeks or so) to reflect and relax.
I find these breaks so very necessary as a teacher. For me it is a time to sleep in; catch up on marking I did not manage to do during the last few weeks of term; as a geography teacher do some reconnaisance for field trips; watch a fe clips on Youtube (for my classes, PD and enjoyment :)) and it is a time to reflect on how things went and most importantly what I do do to make it work even better next term.
These holidays there has been a bit of all of that and especially lots of reflection. One of my classes has a wide range of abilities and the challenge is always to challenge the students who "get it" quickly and at the same time help those who take a little longer to "get it".
The class I am thinking about are Year 13 Geography students and we are studying coastal processes at Muriwai beach on the west coast of NZ (40km from Auckland city). I have decided to differentiate much more and give them a bit more independence with their learning. I hope that they will enjoy the change in the learning environment and that the students will take responsibility for their own learning rather than relying on me for everything. I will give them choice as well as setting examination type tasks for them to complete - will keep you posted on how this goes. I have differentiated the learning with younger students but have never really been brave enough to do this with this age group as it is their last year of school and so much hangs on their results that they get at the end of the year.
Will keep you posted on how this goes.