Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Semester Closing

We are almost there! Both classes are in the midst of projects, speeches, and preparing for finals. I love the holidays and the hustle and bustle of the season. For a teacher, Christmas lights, decorations and some chocolate help us through the chaos of the Winter Break countdown. I can't wait to wrap up these lessons, but I am going to miss my students so much.

I am soaking up as much time and laughter as possible with my seniors. They have been so good for my soul this year. They really are a family and I am so honored to have been their teacher and the person they drove crazy, and made proud.

We finished The Tragedy of Macbeth yesterday and we are working on our research projects over "The Fall of Man" - what causes it, risk-taking or perfectionism?

My speech classes are in the middle of their Demonstration Speeches and will be starting their next speech, Persuasive Speech, right away! Instead of a final they actually give this speech. I am excited to see them prepare and deliver on a topic that is important to them.

Seniors finishing Act V of Macbeth, with a little Christmas decor to help us along. 

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

HFM is no joke.

Yup, still home with a sick kid.

He actually acts pretty happy, just has some gross rash blisters that are awful.

Please give me one more day, after this week I feel like we are all prepared for a e-Learning day.

English 12:


Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Still Contagious

I had to look up how to spell 'contagious' - just being real with you all.

I will return on Thursday, I might smell like bleach and look really tired, but I shall return.

Here are some plans for you, but as always, you know how to check the 'Burman App' and keep pushing along with our plans for the last 4 weeks.

You got this.

English 12:


Monday, November 27, 2017

Quality Plans, Quality Work.

Here we are again, a sick child demands my full attention. Please know that I designed these plans to allow you to keep learning even without me in the room. Email me with questions, and use your time wisely.

You can find your sub plan videos on your respective pages! 

Harrison is so over being sick.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Thankful for Harrison = SUB PLANS

Today I have to take the little man to the doctor! Please behave for my wonderful Sub! I hate missing school, but I hate snotty children even more.



Thursday, October 12, 2017

Seniors + Readings

I can't tell you how much these kids make me laugh. You might think I laugh more than I teach. I have roughly 50 seniors this semester and they are working hard and preparing for a new Unit; Oedipus Rex. We started notes today, but will finish our Grammar II before starting the reading. Lately we have been reviewing, commas, semi-colons, colons, double negatives, and subject verb agreement. Lots of fun, well mostly review, but some of them really like grammar!

I love reading, so I look forward to Oedipus Rex and of course the out of class reading, Angels and Demons. Please be sure to ask you student about these stories in the coming weeks!

New Beginnings

Today was my last day with my Term 1 Speech students. I really enjoyed our laughs, jokes, and just overall community. I am excited about the new, but I am thankful that I started the year off with that awesome group.

Fall Festival Week was last week and it was great. I loved getting to see all the dress ups and the wonderful pep session on Friday. This student driven week was very energetic and fun to watch.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Manic Monday & The Hot Mess Express

Hey! I hope homecoming was great. It is Monday, I am not here, but you still have plans!

English 12


Friday, September 29, 2017

Emergency Plans

Hey guys! I have to leave to get my baby! Here are the plans for your class days! Can we take a moment of silence for these HORRIFIC videos.

English 12:


Thursday, September 21, 2017

Something Nice

Did you know public speaking is one of the top ranked fears among humans? The National Institute of Mental Health did a research last year (September 2016) that stated 74% of people suffer from speech anxiety. This is a real issue that many people battle. I do my best as a teacher to build community and expectations early on in the class and I really think this makes the presentations feel more comfortable, and even has some of the group looking forward to sharing.

One such activity is called "Something Nice" and it is always a surprise. I have students sit against a whiteboard while the rest of the class takes time to write kind and uplifting things around the person. Then I snap a picture, they erase, and do not get to see the picture until the day of their first speech. Nothing builds their confidence more than knowing "people do have nice things to say about me!"

This time around I made sure to take some video and pictures. The class even made me go up to the board! I love this activity and I might even start doing it in my NON-public speaking classes.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Sub Plans - September 15

Hello folks!

Today I am not going to be in the classroom, but that doesn't mean I can't be there in spirit, and by spirit I mean via YouTube.

English 12 Video

Speech Video

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Directions and Strengths

Speech class is spending time getting to know one and other. This helps them feel a bit more comfortable as the prepare for standing in front to deliver a speech. Students are also finding their communication strengths during a partner activity. See below!

We will be spending more time growing as a community in the next week before we start writing our first speech!

Monday, August 14, 2017

Coming Home

Here we are, back in the building. This building is special though. I have been gone for two years. I have had three different teaching jobs. My kids are so much more grown up and I dropped my oldest off at preschool today.

So much has changed. So much is the same. I feel like I am home, and it feels amazing. Follow along as I document my 8th year of teaching! You can also follow along in the weekly plans and happenings in the classroom.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Finish the School Year Strong

8 days left.

Between homework, projects, and finals, you are probably in need of some motivation. Teachers even need some serious coffee and graphics to get through the last sprint to the finish line. Reflect on the following five quotes to re-energize your spirits and get you through these last grueling weeks of the semester.

Doing well in school can be a challenge, especially if you are also involved in sports, clubs, or honor societies. (or you are just plan tired) Managing your time and finding an effective study method may be among the most difficult tasks. However, think of how relieved you will feel once the school year is over. Knowing you did your best can make your summer particularly pleasant and rewarding.

All thrilling accomplishments – publishing a book, passing the BAR exam, opening a business, winning a marathon – come at a price. If these feats were simple, anyone could accomplish them.
You are likely to experience exhaustion, aggravation, and confusion as you work toward your goal. When you feel like you want to give up on your studies, (or the grading pile is about to fall on your teachers) remind yourself of how far you have come. Keep going; you are almost at the finish line!

You have probably heard it many times before: knowledge is power. This simple adage holds much truth, however. If we analyze some of the world’s most influential people, we realize they all have something in common – they introduced us to novel ideas, which were the result of scholarship, experimentation, and reflection. For these reasons, the course of history was changed in a positive way. With useful knowledge or a revolutionary philosophy, you, too, can make an impact. The first step is learning!

As you buckle down toward the end of the school year, you may have to make some sacrifices. This might entail studying for exams instead of going out with your friends, or working on projects instead of watching television. To excel at school, students may need to give up time and energy they would normally spend on other pursuits. Though you may feel tired and frustrated these last few weeks of class, remember that it will all be worth it. You are becoming a wiser, more knowledgeable, well-rounded person. You are learning to see from different perspectives, write and read effectively, use your logic, and solidify your own voice. By giving up a few pleasures now, you can reap copious long-term benefits.

School is not always a fun experience. At times you may feel stressed about meeting deadlines, overwhelmed by new information, or uncertain about your post-school plans. All of these reactions are normal. However, if you can stay strong and remain on top of your schoolwork, you may be rewarded in the future. You will also enjoy the weeks of no homework and sunshine instead. By learning to be organized and self-disciplined now, you are more likely to succeed in your future pursuits.

This post was first published by Tiffany Sorensen, with adjustments and graphics added my Mrs. Burman!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Notes About Conspiracy

The English 11 students are hard at work on their research projects. Here is the website for more details about their project! So far they have developed thesis statements, found their resources, and are making note cards. Next up they will be creating outlines and typing the actually essay! The project as a whole is worth 200 points and I have enjoyed hearing how interested the students are about their chosen conspiracy theories.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Persuasive Freshmen

We have 25 day of school left, isn't that just crazy?! The English 9 group will be spending those last days eyeball deep in persuasion. We have already taken notes, presented, and applied our knowledge of Ethos, Pathos, and Logos. Now the students will be searching for these pillars of persuasion in commercials, speeches, and essays.

Next week we will be watching The Great Debaters and really digging into how this history making debate team used the pillars of persuasion. This movie is based of a true story and the debate team at Wiley College does live on!

Upon completing the movie, the class will be developing their own persuasive arguments, researching information to back up their opinions, and then writing an essay to finish up the year!

I am looking forward to being persuaded.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Memes Making Me Smile

I loved bringing memes into the classroom. The freshman are finished with The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet and we are doing some fun wrap up activities. We listened to "Love Story" by Taylor Swift and talked about how she clearly was not paying attention in class when they read that play. Then we wrote her a letter explaining how she was wrong.

I then broke the class into smaller groups and assigned a Meme Project. The groups were to create 6 Memes that made the class chuckle about the play in general. Here are few of the funny ones that I just cannot keep to myself.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Hands-On Learning

While looking through my Professional Learning Network on Twitter [yes, I just referred to my teacher friends on Twitter as a PLN] I saw a post directing me to why hands on learning needs to make a come back. See the article here. I will be the first to talk about my frustration with the testing culture, but that doesn't mean teachers can create small projects to refresh their classrooms. I think these small hands-on learning type lessons are perfect for that!

Let me be clear, I LOVE TECHNOLOGY, but there is a different quiet that comes over a room when students are working with their hands, and not with a device. I love that love that lull and small talk and genuine conversation, excitement to show what they made. These students are in high school, and I think even our oldest students crave using scissors, markers, and paper.
"Project learning can and should hit the affective domain. Kids care, and we don't tap into that caring often enough. If they care, they will apply themselves to learn, and they may come up with a solution that has so far eluded adults."
My juniors have had a few chances to use their hands and I tried to document these moments to show you how well they work. Notice the devices put down and students still activity learning? These little projects are very basic and sometimes are as far as I can go with hands on given our subject area and preparing for testing. Project based learning (a form of hands-on learning) is still being researched and often doesn't produce great results in the testing world, but I think a few small projects after grueling work loads in class can be refreshing, for the students and for me.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Declaring Love

I was certain that we would be not getting any 2 hour delays or snow days during the remainder for the school year. Then, boom! Surprise! I was so happy to see that we had time off this week. How many of you knew that we (Norwell High School) had 70+ students out due to illness? We needed some time to rest and recover.

When we return to school we will finish up or quick lesson on The Declaration of Independence in English 11. I was surprised so many Juniors had not seen this video that is a parody of a popular song "Too Late to Apologize" by One Republic. I used it to set up the lesson and I got a few chuckles.

In English 9 we are working our way through Romeo and Juliet - I LOVE all things William Shakespeare, and this story has been a blast to teach. We are just starting Act II, but if you need a recap on Act I - see the video below:

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Stomach Bug Attacks the Burman Home!

I love a good sub day video, as we all know....

....but I couldn't be away from the toilet long enough to video myself. Amelia (3) and myself are queens of toilets tonight.

English 11 - Study for the Sermon and Persuasion Quiz, take the quiz (link on your page) and then complete Journal #5!

English 9 - Study for William Shakespeare Quiz, take the quiz, complete Journal #5!

Wash your hands often and go ahead and indulge in a sweet snack, odds are you will get the stomach flu at some point in the next few weeks, so it won't matter.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

TEDTalk made me do it.

I love a good TEDTalks and they found their way into my lesson plans this week, and being gone on a Monday was a great time to watch a few good videos.

English 11 Sub Plans:

English 9 Sub Plans:

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Blackout Poetry - English 9

This is seriously one of my favorite lessons. I never felt connected with poetry as a student and then I stumbled across Austin Kleon's work while in college. He would take news paper, normally the New York Times and use articles to create poetry by blacking out words that did not fit into his newly created poem.

After viewing more work, I knew I had to introduce this to my classes. I now use this project as a introduction to all things poetry! I love the pressure it takes off students to create the words. They enjoy searching for anchor words and ideas. I have never heard a class get so quiet and yet be so productive. The confidence it builds is crazy and all of the sudden, poetry is not so scary. Sometimes poetry becomes a favorite and I jump for joy. #teacherwins

I will be sure to share examples after the presentation, and don't worry English 11, you will be next!

Monday, January 16, 2017

Staying Healthy and Making Plans

After what felt like the longest week of my mom/teacher life, we are here. A new week, a new Monday, a new beginning.

I hate missing school and I hope you [students] got some comfort and guidance from my videos using, TouchCast (this a great tool that even you can use for projects!). I will always leave videos for you to watch when I am gone. I told many of my classes, but after delivering my son, 2 weeks early, I made a video in the hospital bed reminding students of what they needed to be working on. I just hate missing school.

This week we are finishing Cover Letters and Resumes in English 11, and will be working on some colonial pieces to work on our persuasion skills. In English 9 we are wrapping up a genres unit focusing on Fiction vs. Nonfiction and will be working on some Poetry to prepare for Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. 

Big things happening, stay strong, not long until spring break and I hate to break it to you all... I don't see many Snow/Ice days in our future. I have been cleaning all the desks and door knobs on the regular in class, cheers to staying healthy!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Sub Plans 2017 - Thursday

Welp, both kiddos are now sick and I am doing my best to lysol all the things... I mean EVERYTHING, even the dog. I be staying home again tomorrow, trying to not get sick. I made more amazing videos for your viewing pleasure class instruction. Enjoy.

English 11 - Continue filling out the Cover Letter Worksheet and Resume Worksheets - together I call this your data collection for the big assignment. Also, you have your first journal. I can't wait to see what you come up with!

English 9 - I realized how long the short story about Owl Creek Bridge was last night, use this extra time to finish the story and the questions that follow. You also need to do your first journal, I love this prompt. NOW... it says list... but explain a little for too! 

Monday, January 9, 2017

Sub Plans 2017 - Wednesday

Hey everyone, I have sick babe and I need to be home to care for him. Don't worry I left you with some quick plans via video. I hated have busy work as a student and as a teacher, I hate grading it. With that said, I just continued our weekly plans with a few changes.

If you have questions, email me! I will check my inbox often.

English 11 - we are beginning the first project "Cover Letter + Resume" and I want you to look at the final rubric and start collecting information needed to build your cover letter + resume. I will grade the packets for completion when I return.

English 9 - we are moving the genre note until I get back, and instead, jumping to the fiction vs. nonfiction and fictional piece today! 

Sunday, January 8, 2017

New Semester and Changes

2017 is the year of "Change" and we are already off to a great start in English 11 and English 9 with Mrs. Burman [me]!

I have really enjoyed meeting all the new students and finding my footing in the curriculum for courses. I have ALWAYS loved these classes and have actually ALWAYS taught them in my 7 years of experience. I can't wait to bring some new ideas and projects to the students in the next semester.

Both classes have taken a pretest to help me better create lessons and to just see what area in which they already are strong. I also have required the students to purchase a journal or composition book [88 cents] and fill out a home information sheet to help me better communicate when needed with those who hold the students accountable.

I can't tell you how amazing it is to be back in the classroom and how much I am enjoying being at Norwell High School, now if only I could find a way to get some free Norwell gear! Trust me, I look great in gold and blue.
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