I’ve wrote earlier this week about how I’m having students begin two book discussion groups at our school library — one on “Bless Me Ultima” and the other on “Always Running” by Luis Rodriguez.
There’s plenty of stuff on the web on “Bless Me Ultima,” but I can’t find anything on “Always Running.” I’m really surprised at that absence — I assume it’s a pretty popular teen book everywhere (but maybe my assumption is incorrect?).
I obviously can prepare my own discussion questions to get students started, but I’d like not to “reinvent the wheel” if I can help it.
(I just learned from Linda Clinton that Barnes and Noble has a decent reading guide, but I’m still interested in others)
I’m searching right now for the URL to a unit I facilitated a few years back. It was hosted on a server provided by the National Writing Project (pre-Edublogs & Blogger days).
Through a blog, I connected an 11th grade English class at a continuation high school in Elk Grove with an 11th grade class at a continuation high school in Lompoc.
The opening question for the unit was “What does it mean to be always running in your own communities?” This question ignited the shared conversations between the two sites – and provided enough content about the issues and realities students deal with on a daily basis to warrant a f2f videoconference. A great kick-off for the unit!
From that point on, students took charge of the prompts, posting and responding – often beyond the school day.
The unit ended with Luis Rodriguez traveling to the LA County Office of Ed to join in on a 3-way video conference. Somewhere I have footage from the event, which I’d be happy to send your way. Luis was amazing – and student ownership of learning went to a whole new level.
For a starter, your students might want to follow Luis on Twitter at http://twitter.com/luisjrodriguez.