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Automatic English For The People

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Tom Peters Essentials

by AJ

Just bought a book by Tom Peters called Leadership and its fantastic-- packed full of incredible ideas for teachers. Browsing it, I was immediately inspired to try something new with my BAS Monday class (my guinea pigs :)

Ive already given them a nebulous assignment called a "project".. but have not spelled out what that means. Well, Im going to turn this into a game. Sort of a collaborative investment game. Here's how it will work.

The project is worth 75 points. Students will start with a full 75 points. They will then invest these points in projects (in multiples of 5).

To receive a grade, all projects must be "registered" with the Project Commissioner (thats me). For a project to be registered with me, it must have: a)a designated Project Manager, b)a minimum of 100 pts of "investment". I will periodically list registered projects on this website, along with the total number of points invested in the project.

Students invest in a project by putting (promising) some (or all) of their 75 points into it. Since a project needs a minimum of 100pts to be submitted, every project must have at least two "investors" to be "viable" (ie. to get a grade).

Up until midterm (first class in October), students may shift their investments any way they like. They may invest all points in one project... or scatter them among many. They can take points out if they think an investment is going to do badly. They may hold onto points and not invest them... waiting to see which projects look good. However, at the first class in October, all students must invest all of their points and these investments are final. No more changing after that class!

At that time, each student will submit a "Project Portfolio" to me... listing the projects they've invested in and how many points they are putting into each.

Likewise, at that time, every Project Manager will submit a List of Investors... which will include a)the name of the project, b) the name of the Project Manager, and c) a list of all students contributing to the project AND how many points each has invested.

At the end of the semester, each group of investors will submit their project paper and give a presentation. Since students can invest in more than one project, they may (obviously) contribute to more than one presentation/paper. How much energy and time they contribute to each project is up to them.

Each project will be graded by a panel of outside judges... people I choose who are willing to be judges. Thus, nice Ajarn AJ will not be doing the grading! I will try to find native speakers who value quality and creativity.

These judges will give a percentage grade... ranging roughly from 150% down to 0%.

This percentage grade will be multiplied by the number of points invested-- to produce the number of points each student will get for that project.

Thus, a grade of 150% will give students a significant number of "extra credit points".

The grading scale will be roughly this:

150% Wow! Amazing and Mind Blowing!!
120% Fantastic!
100% Great.
90% Very Good.
80% Good
70% Decent. Solid.
60% So-So.
50% Boring.
40% Low quality. Bad.

You get the idea. Judges will give grades after they have reviewed ALL of the projects and seen ALL of the presentations... so they can compare them.

Obviously, it is in each student's interest to contribute to the project(s) they invest in- to help it get a good grade (and therefore the student gets a good "return on their investment").

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