Sunday, March 20, 2005

Casper-The Friendly Ghost

For months I had been grappling with the issue of how to help kids improve and present better written work. Children are often in such a hurry to complete their written work, that sometimes they end up making careless mistakes or turn in untidy work with illegible handwriting. I tried all sorts of things to solve the problem, whether it was positive re-enforcement by acknowledging neat work, good hand-writing, or work turned in with no spelling errors in class, and making other children applaud, or ‘talking’ to them about the importance of good handwriting et al. I tried all the tricks in the book, and more. Well, not quite. It worked perfectly with some children, while with others; it worked only for a short period of time. Invariably they would revert back to their old habits. Either they would compromise on speed or neatness or if both were OK, there would be lots of spelling mistakes. I had to work out some solution for this.

I thought about it for eons and drew a blank.

And voila! There it was one day. Casper- The friendly Ghost came to my rescue! I made-up an acronym for the word ‘Casper’, and used it as a set of instructions/reminder to kids. It goes likes this...

C-Check

A-all the

S-Spellings

P-Punctuations

E-Errors

wR-iting

It worked! Now after a child completes his/her work, he/ she just ‘Caspers’ it! It’s fun when kids ask each other, ‘Have you Caspered your work?’

For the past few weeks, I have been using this method successfully to encourage children in my class to present better-written work. Their written work is significantly better now.

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I’ve been toying with the idea of having an Education blog for quite some time now. When that happens, I guess I’ll re-post this one on the new site. I’m thinking for a suitable name for my new Edu-Blog. Any ideas?

32 comments:

  1. Casper - The Friendly
    GH - Ghost
    O - Of
    S - Sangeeta
    T - Teacher

    Nice concept though...man I never had teacher with such an innovative ideas, thats y I still rely on Word's spell check all the time :)

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  2. Thanks.glad u liked the idea.

    I am not the last word on spellings myself. I use Spell-Check too

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  3. Hi Sangeeta,
    Thanks for dropping by. You seem to have an interesting blog too. You're a teacher, I guess. Good luck with those kids. There's nothing more fulfilling than seeing a lightbulb go on in somebody's head while you explain something. It's a joy to witness an 'aha' moment and I'm sure your students will have many of them with you around. Good luck and drop in again!

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  4. Wonderful Idea, I am pretty sure that the concept of "Caspering" your work sounds cool when anyone talks about it.

    As for the edu blog, I am pretty sure you must've thought more about it - I feel it would be more of a help to teachers than kids (considering the ratio of time spent online) So the naming should be appropriate - keeping that in mind.

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  5. Hey, that's a cool idea and a cooler lingo :)

    And as for ur edublog...have it as..

    www.oftheteacherbytheteacherfortheteacher.blogspot.com

    This way u'll make sure that they have this on their favs list, nobody wants to type such a big name :)

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  6. Great idea, even I need CASPER. Good luck with your new blog.

    suggestions for blog name.
    1. blogarithm (seem to be restricted to maths:)

    2 edunation (scope seem too wide)

    At this moment I can think of these names. If you can specify activites of the blog it will help.

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  7. hanks for gliding by MW Yes, I am a teacher. and I get these brainwaves more too often..this time i've promised myself that Im gonna write them down:P

    Right Mad Van Arthur..Thanks..well I certainly want it to be something that wd be helpful to teachers

    Praveen..thats a nice suggestion..a very democratic name:-)

    JV I will take ur suggestions into account

    Hmm..how about A Class Apart or A Class Act?

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  8. CASPER is a nice concept,keep up the good work:))))

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  9. Thanks Neelima glad u appreciate the idea :-) means a lot to me

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  10. hi !

    thanks for dropping by...

    well ... ur blog is far more interesting ... i really loved this entry !!! just hope there was a CASPER when i was younger :)

    good work ... keep it up !

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  11. U sure are a creative teacher. would have loved to have one like you but my mom was wonderful too. and for your edublog how about ... wherethebulbglows ..hehe. or GuruKool or ... i'm not good at it

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  12. hey sangeeta, just hoped here..... great going....very innovative idea for kids

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  13. hi funda idea yaar...i guess kids love you as a teacher.

    and ur edu blog...is it a group blog?

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  14. Hi Sangeeta. Hows life?

    'Casper',hmm how innovative ! :)

    Should be real fun to be your student!

    You remind me of one of my teachers way back in school.

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  15. Hi Sangeeta..bloghopped here from Krish's.

    My sister is a teacher in Chennai too, and with your permission, I am gonna ask her to look at your blog for ideas she could use in her classroom as well.

    You are doing a wonderful thing as a teacher. Just wish that more kids have the good fortune of having teachers as spirited and resourceful as you are.

    Also, as suggestions for your education blog: "Didactics",
    "Pedagogy" or "Edu-tainment"

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  16. Casper ...
    Innovative idea indeed ...
    Its best to correct kids at this age regarding spellings n grammer.
    Keep up the good work ...
    Your students are lucky indeed.
    Cheers !!!

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  17. Name for your Edu - Blog
    "Learning Is Fun"

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  18. Hi Sangeeta. You have a nice blog here and Casper is a cool idea indeed. Edu blog you said?
    "Some-Gita" - the bible for learning, how does it sound?

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  19. Hello sangs..
    like the concept ..small children would luv it.

    also ... u have a nice blog.

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  20. You can name your Education blog as BEST
    Blog on
    Education by
    Sangeeta
    Teacher

    or something like (excuse me in advance...I dont think normal)
    e-Bikini
    education
    Blog by Miss
    Kini

    Greetz :)

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  21. hmm... what an innovative way!!!
    u know, i have a bad handwriting that each and every teacher who taught me used to advise me alot on that... buttttt kya karen... control nahi karpaya.. :))

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  22. wow thats so cool..
    i admire u for it..and will be visiting ur blog regularly..
    how sweet..if not a doc i wud have been a teacher..

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  23. Nice...
    I have had horrible experience with schooling. I mean not like they tortured me or anythinging but school did all but crush my pleasant childhood.
    I am staunch believer that institutionalized education is not too good for Human spirit. Know these are really strong but then its true. Its thanks, to playgrounds and birds outside the classroom that I have any imgination left in me :)
    I was a very creative kid they say, especially when it came to spellings. I absolutely hated "Language" thanks to all the impositions I wrote. Avoided the written word as far as possible (I am also a pathalogical slow reader)
    I was not until my horse riding teacher told me on his farm house that he draws inspiration from a book called Papillon that I really started thinking of books. One night he gets drunk and declares the I need to build some character. Bang I have 2000 page 2 Kg book called TEXAS by James A Mishner. Took me over two years to read the book.
    THAT was education.
    I think I LOVE languages now.
    As long is a rose is not just R-O-S-E but the sweet thing that grows in my backyard, in dirt and manure and smells so good.

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  24. i must say...an excellent idea indeed!!
    CHEERS TO YOU!!!
    abt the title...how abt...
    teachme.blogspot.com
    :)

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  25. Seems to be a very nice technique to me.
    Wish they had taught me like that when I was young.

    How about caspered.blogspot.com, unless somebody has not taken it already.

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  26. CASPERing stuff...as most people have already said..its KEWL

    How about this for ur education blog??

    http://sangeeta-tutorials.blogspot.com LOL...
    Its simple n straight
    jus kiddin :)

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  27. Thankjs for dropping by too KPower..Glad u liked the blog:-)

    Thank YouPisku, I didn't win the Best Teacher's Award last year for nothing:P

    Hey Tarun..Thanks for stopping by man..

    No Ram as of now..it will just be me..

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  28. Xena Im honoured ..thanks


    Sure Daph Go ahead..will be my pleasure

    ThanksBablu I agree with u

    Thanks Hagrid glad u liked the blog

    Sudarshan thanks ...

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  29. Prasad Awwww...don't lose hope..there's still a chance u may improve

    Divya Thanks a lot..the encouragement means a lot 2 me

    Wookie Thank u..Thank u

    Aberrant Thanks..for visiting
    *This is beginning to sound like an Acceptance Speech:P

    The Optimist Thanks...it's given good results..and that's real kewl

    Sathish I wish the same too:(

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  30. Swapnil I cant even try and relate my school day nightmares. I was in a convent school..supposed to be best in the area..and believe..it gives me the shudders to even think abt those days. Verbal abuse, corporal punishment..high expectations..no appreciation...total neglect..to cut a long story short..a complete torture house..I wd never recommend that school to anyone. In fact i grew up with huge complexes..and a nervous stammer..and it was onbly when i got into this school where im teaching..i gained some amt of confidence..whew! I'm trying very hard not to be like 'my' teachers:P

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  31. Thanks for the ideas Every body I'm gonna start this blog in May..till then..if u still think of anything else..do drop in a line

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