That was the question asked of me yesterday at the end of the school day. Another teacher and I were just chitchatting about our days. The conversation began with her asking, "How was your day?" To which I replied, "It was awesome. I'm done. I don't have to teach anymore." (We have two weeks left, approx half of a semester). I continued, "I have the students teaching now. I told them they have taken all this before. They already know it. It was time to step up." To which she asked our title question today.
I was surprised at her disbelief. Her response was, "My kids are too retarded for that." With that she left the room. So how did I get my kids to do this? And for the record, they are doing an AWESOME job. Their peers are being assessed just as if I had been doing the teaching and they are doing well. It all began on day 1 when I told them that none of them were stupid. Most of them were repeating the class in summer school because of poor work ethic, personality clashes with the teachers, and a bunch of other reasons that had nothing to do with their intellectual or academic abilities. They have been required to synthesize and analyze their knowledge everyday and intelligently write about it. They have taken part in two other inquiry based projects already this summer. This was the logical next step. Getting to do this was actually pretty easy. They can probably do even more.