Howdy folks, and welcome back from Thanksgiving break. I hope all of you had a great one and didn't just stuff yourself with stuffing.
I think that one of my little girls indulged a bit too much over the holidays. As I was right in the middle of a fantastic demonstration on arrays, I suddenly heard the sound of 500 wet paperclips hitting the floor. I looked over to see a big splotch of turkey-colored vomit on the ground.
"Go to the bathroom!" I shouted at her. She replied by standing up, turning towards the door -- and then retching a fresh batch of puke onto the ground.
Anyway, this Interactive Monday post is NOT how do you feel about vomit, so we'll end THAT topic here.
Instead, my question is, How do you attain participation in class? We always seem to have those kids that come in day after day with nothing better to do than try to impersonate a brick. Sometimes these are kids who do fantastic on tests, but they never talk in class. Sometimes they are kids who fail horribly in class and never raise their hands in class. Sometimes it's the vast majority of the class!
I am finally getting to a point this year where most of my kids are participating. There are still a few who very rarely volunteer anything in class, but something is a big improvement over nothing. To get to this point, I have used a combination of bribery, parent conferences, student conferences, threatening to give them a failing "participation grade" -- which is about as existent as the "wardrobe selection grade" -- and, in some cases, what borders on badgering.
So any other strategies out there? How do you get participation from your "bricks?"