Revisiting the Box

I spent the last week with our 11th Grade AP Seminar students discussing their ideas, thoughts, concerns, and questions about AP Research. The entire time was a privilege and incredible opportunity. I posed the following question to them: I’ve taught 6th grade, 8th grade, 9th grade, 10th grade, and 12th grade at our network. I’m pretty convinced I understand what our 6th through 9th grade classes should look like. I have a vision for 10th grade. However, I’m not convinced I’ve seen what our 12th grade classes can become. I posed this challenge to the 11th graders: We get A LOT of visitors who come to see our schools. When a visitor walks in, I want the principal to say, without hesitating, go see AP Research in Room 304. That’s what we do.

With this sentiment in mind, I revisited this post from Doug Lemov. I looped with this class; 8th, 9th, 10th, and 12th grade. They graduated last week and I’ve been sappy ever since. Two students in the video were in my AP Research class this year – modern perceptions of pornography and impact of femicide on immigration rates from Mexico were their topics. I’m very proud of my work in this video. But given where these students are going to college I”m not convinced I increased the rigor at the appropriate level. I could have done more.

With respect to the video, four years later, here’s where the students featured are going:

  • Syracuse University College of Engineering
  • College of the Saint Rose
  • Swathmore College
  • Franklin & Marshall
  • Columbia University
  • SUNY Old Westbury
  • CUNY John Jay College
  • University of Central Florida
  • Johns Hopkins
  • SUNY Polytechnic
  • Ursinus College
  • University of Michigan

There are 2-3 students who transferred out – one went to a specialized high school, one moved away, and I’m not sure about the third. One student in this class, not present in the video, ended up at a private school through Prep 4 Prep. As I drafted this I saw via the Internets that she is going to Yale.



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