Trimester 2 Exam

“Happiness does not come from doing easy work but from the afterglow of satisfaction that comes after the achievement of a difficult task that demanded our best.” – Theodore Isaac Rubin

This trimesters exam was difficult! Your children are really working on a difficult task, historical thinking. This is critical thinking in a History classroom. We try to answer a historical question by looking into the time period and trying to learn what life was like and why people made the choices they made. It is something that high school students, college students, graduate students and adults struggle with. We have been doing this for a total of 24 weeks, give or take a few snow days.

We are working on this together and are holding ourselves to a high standard. After all, that is where the true satisfaction will come from!

There is a poem called “What Teachers Make” by Taylor Mali. In it there is a line that goes like this:

I make kids work harder than they ever thought they could.
I can make a C+ feel like a Congressional Medal of Honor
and an A-­‐ feel like a slap in the face.
How dare you waste my time
with anything less than your very best.

Historical thinking is a difficult task! Notice the exclamation point. It is there for a reason. Emphasis and to drive home the point.

We are historians in class. Students are expected to share their source information when they share information so they are credible to make their point well, they are expected to have enough sources to not be limited to just one viewpoint and make a clear point when answering the question.

As I have told them countless times (I am sure someone has a tally going) “There is no teacher’s edition with all the right answers in it and each of us can have a correct answer. That is why this is such a great class!”

Parents, students, others… I would love to hear your feedback. What are your thoughts? Maybe you would like to join us for an activity in class? How amazing would that be to get two generations of perspective on a topic?

Share your thoughts!

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5 thoughts on “Trimester 2 Exam

  1. Mr. Kipling

    Thank You parents that have commented! Keep them coming. This is huge for the learning process. No longer does learning happen just inside cinder block walls! You are (and can be even more) a big part of the process.

  2. Pat Bectel

    It’s refreshing that you are challenging the kids to use their brains and not just memorize things from a book. Even if the kids don’t realize it, you pushing them now will definitely pay off in their futures.

  3. Jim Walters

    This sounds great. I know Sam is learning more things that will benefit him later in life than I did memorizing events at that age. Maybe this will break the cycle of “history always repeats itself”. I would be glad to come participate in class ( I won’t ask Sam’s opinion on that). Thanks for all you do!

  4. Kathlyn Gould

    I would love to participate in class. I like it that you challenge the students to think on their own, and subsequently their peers with new ways of thinking!

  5. brad schubert

    Hi Mr. Kipling,

    Good stuff…i think its great that the students are being challenged. Wish my history/SS class would have been like this! I’d like to come in and participate…it would be interesting…however, not surprisingly, Carina is not in favor of it! I’ll work on it though…

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