As the academic year for Bnos Rabbeinu High School of Chicago comes to a close, we look back in retrospect to share some impressive academic innovations.
The use of ‘plickers’ significantly enhanced the Tanya class. Using a computer and a smartphone together with a projector and printer, the abstract concepts of Tanya came alive to the students.
Teachers compose multiple choice and true/false questions via the plicker website. Students select the correct answer with their plicker card. The answers are scanned and displayed on the projector. It simulates a smart board and clickers, and is available at no charge.
By implementing the plicker question technique, learning Tanya became enjoyable, even for the concrete-minded student. The plicker questions were used as warm ups, refreshers, exit tickets, and checking the student’s understanding. As a result, the students experienced instant feedback as well as having the positive feeling of answering questions correctly. The teacher was able to discern a student’s misunderstanding and correct it. With plickers, class time became exciting and a true success experience for our students.
The focus for this year’s English course was to develop the students’ creative writing skills. Students learned to clarify and crystalize their thoughts in both speech and writing, so their intentions matched their expressions. The students researched familiar situations from new perspectives in order to gain insight into preconceived notions; for their writing journal on travel, they examined Crown Heights from the perspective of a visitor.
Fundamental in successful education is the teacher’s commitment to motivate students — understanding that students learn best when they themselves are sources of information. In Hilchos Shabbos class, students became regular teachers. After researching the details of specific Shabbos halachas, our students enacted situations expressing both what is allowed and what is not allowed to be done on Shabbos. Being the instructor greatly enhanced the students’ interest, retention and application of halachos.
Our Dance instructor introduced a new technique “authentic movement” in addition to the basic exercises, stretches and dances which develop one’s coordination skills and memory. “Authentic movement” exercises improve the student’s ability to listen her body and subdue the chatter of her mind. The girls gained much from this new approach.
We see that amazing things can happen when the school and teachers are focused on student interest and success. For more information about Bnos Rabbeinu High School of Chicago visit Bnosrabbeinu.com.