By Marsha Ratzel
I wanted my 6th graders to write in science class. My goal was to inspire them to demonstrate their understanding of the properties of minerals as well as the elements of good writing. I realized it would be no easy task. After all, minerals are not a topic high on the interest list of any 12-year-old I know.
Yet I found myself in a computer lab full of students who were happily typing their hearts out, writing about minerals. And later, I commented on one well-written essay after another. Was I surprised? Yes. Was I satisfied? Absolutely. All my scheming had paid off.
Let me tell you how my students and I did it.