Thursday, November 20, 2008

Please take a second to respond to this....

Can you please take a moment to respond to this in the comment stream so I can forward this on to Ms. Clapp. Since these prep sessions are for you, your comments will be listened to and planned for. Thanks bloggies.

A message from Ms. Clapp:

"Hi Everyone,

It was great to see everyone last Saturday and I hope your students felt it was worthwhile. Please let me know any feedback you've received, positive or negative.

So I'm now planning the next one, January 24th. The students will take a full sample exam in the first 3 hour block. Could you please ask them (and weigh in yourself) on what comes in the 90 minute block after lunch:

Option A: Student will review the multiple choice section of the exam they just took, using the student run discussion model we did at the prep session and that many of you use at home.

Option B: Students will attend sessions on new topics - writing, close reading, etc."

12 comments:

Andy V. said...

Hi Miss Clapp,

The lessons at Northeastern were helpful and interesting. However the whole even felt confusing and frantic. Maybe the students will be more prepaired the second time, but we should have handouts of the locations for the classrooms and the schedule before we reach Northeastern, so each student knows where exactly they need to go and when.

Having a sample test sounds like a great idea and I think it would be more beneficial if we review over the multiple choice sections we will take. Going over the answers and why each question had the answer it has, really helps me understand and memorize the correct response.

Anyway, good luck Miss Clapp, hope it will turn out well.

Matt Z! said...

Hey Ms. Clapp!

I found the last prep session to be extremely beneficial. There were certain things in particular during the Analyzing Prose/ Open Response Essay lessons that really helped me. This is the part of the exam that I am most concerned about, as I am not very good at thinking and writing on the spot within a short amount of time, and it really helped to not only read multiple previously-written essays, discuss them, and then analyze our own stories, excerpts, and prompts.

For this same reason, I'm going to have to disagree with Andy when I say that I think attending sessions on new topics instead of just going over the answers to the multiple choice would be a better idea. I think it would be more helpful in the long run to expose students to different aspects of the AP test, such as showing us interesting writing techniques that we can use to possibly score some extra points on our essays.

Mario P. said...

Dear Ms.Clapp,

I for one thoroughly enjoyed the session at Northeastern. Although many complained about, "not learning anything," I for one didn't see it as an experience to learn something new. All the classes seemed ideally for review. Every class I went into felt as a reminded to what the things were, and how to do them correctly. Along with review, I did learn a lot about the AP Exam, one of my instructors was even a reader for the essays.

As for the notion of having a practice exam and reviewing the answer afterward, I am all for it. I do the very same thing in preparation for my Computer Programming AP exam, and I must say it is incredibly beneficial. Not only does one get to know what the answer is, one more importantly gets to know why an answer is the correct answer.

Whatever the outcome, I am looking forward to the next prep session.

Mary N. said...

Hello Ms. Clapp!

I actually enjoyed the prep sessions at Northeastern. Although I felt that they did not necessarily provide me with any new information, the classes definitely reviewed the different topics thoroughly and interestingly.

Specifically, I thought the examples that were handed out of the various essays ranging from a 9-essay to a 1-essay really showed what the AP Graders look for in a quality essay, when it comes to diction, tone, syntax, etc. In addition, the multiple choice packets and the class discussion of the answers really helped with identification of different types of questions, which leads to a better understanding of what is being asked (questions are sometimes very obscured). So, yup, that was beneficial.

Honestly, after a 3 hour AP practice exam, I feel as though students would be restless and unwilling to sit for sessions on new topics. I feel as though the student seminars on the multiple choice answers would be the better pick, as I know after I take a test, I am anxious to see how well, or bad, I did. Therefore, I am more inclined to pay attention and to participate in a multiple choice student seminar than in sessions that present different topics.

I'd still attend regardless of what the decision is!

Ashley A said...

Dear Ms. Clapp,

I thought the classes at Northeastern were overall very helpful and I liked being taught by other teachers because it gave us an opportunity to learn different styles of approaching the exam. However, I felt that once we arrived at Northeastern, everything was rushed and a little unorganized in terms of receiving a schedule and finding the correct locations for the classes.

After we take the three hour practice exam on the 24th, I would prefer to take more classes because I would like to take as many classes that will prepare me for the exam as possible. I think it would be best to take maybe one or two classes, instead of four, because the exam itself is very exhausting. I do not think it’s the best idea to review the multiple choice answers in a student run discussion style after the exam because it seems as if everyone argues over why they choose their answer and by the end, there is not enough time to discuss which answer is correct and why.

Cynthia R said...

Well I am going to be onest and say that I did enjoy the AP session last saturday (even though it was on a saturday).

I think that taking a portion of the test is an exellent idea since practice is what we need. Talking about the test DOES help, but only to a certain extent. The way I learn best (and maybe some of my peers as well) is through practice and discusion. Taking the test and then going over what we had difficulty with would be helpful.

Maybe we can take the test teh first part and after lunch we can discuss why certain answer work and others don't, techniques to save time, and other tips.

Overall i think that more interaction between students and the teacher would keep us interested and focused.

Cynthia R said...

Well I am going to be onest and say that I did enjoy the AP session last saturday (even though it was on a saturday).

I think that taking a portion of the test is an exellent idea since practice is what we need. Talking about the test DOES help, but only to a certain extent. The way I learn best (and maybe some of my peers as well) is through practice and discusion. Taking the test and then going over what we had difficulty with would be helpful.

Maybe we can take the test teh first part and after lunch we can discuss why certain answer work and others don't, techniques to save time, and other tips.

Overall i think that more interaction between students and the teacher would keep us interested and focused.

Kayla P said...

Hey Ms. Clapp,

I thought the first session at North Eastern was interesting. I expected to be bored, but it was very interactive, which I enjoyed.
I think I would rather attend new sessions this time, and I 100% agree with Ashley that it seems we spend more time arguing when we review the multiple choice in a student run discussion, and in the end we feel rushed. So I'd much rather learn, (or re-learn, perhaps) some new things.

Kristen W. said...

Hi Ms. Clapp!

I really enjoyed going to Northeastern and I felt as if I got a lot out of it. I felt as if I had no idea about what the AP test was, but after that session I'm a bit more relaxed and understanding of the process.

I don't really think that reviewing out answers after the test would be too beneficial because that wouldn't leave any time to focus on the other aspects of the exam. I believe that getting a better understanding of the ENTIRE exam will be better than just focusing on one part of the exam.

Thanks and Good Luck!
Kristen.

Stephen said...

Hello, Ms. Clapp!

I'm going to echo everyone's sentiments here. I did enjoy the sessions (even though it was a Saturday). The sessions themselves ranged from involved and spirited to a... bit boring, yet informative (yours, of course, was not one of the latter).

I'm FOR taking more classes. I think that the review part of the exam can be done back at Malden High (in the discussion format) and can be done quite easily. Honestly, we're one of the larger groups there- the opinions of the AP students from the other school shouldn't differ significantly with ours regarding the test scores and the rationales behind the scores for each student. We can certainly finish the test, attend a few sessions, and then review the test another day. Having sat through a 3- hour test, I wouldn't want to spend the rest of the day reviewing it. Just my two cents...

Jenny L said...

Hi Miss Clapp,

Like many of my classmates, I enjoyed the AP Prep Session at Northeastern. I find it really beneficial to be able to review topics before taking the actual test in May. We were also given lists of books that often appear on the AP exam which I find really helpful as well. Overall I liked the style of each session where AP material was handed out and there were class discussions on what the score should be. This really gave me an idea of what level of work each grade denotes.
The sessions were all review however, so I think that it would also be helpful if we attend sessions on new topics.

Thanks!

Vanessa G. said...

Hey Ms. Clapp. Honestly, the beginning of the session was a bit..."boring" but probably because it was a Saturday morning, but later in the day, the subjects became more interesting and more engaging. I feel like I learned a great deal of information and I liked how we had the opportunity to read samples of actual student writings in class, the good and bad ones.

Other than that, I think Option B is better because probably for my own sake, I think I need more background information for the AP Exam and this new date would be a chance to gain new knowledge and possibly more effective methods in passing the exam.

Thank you for allowing us to voice our opinions.