Remember when students would fill out their information on index cards? Thank goodness all that stuff is now in our computer data bases! But having easier record keeping meant I missed out on the opportunity for my students to provide information I needed in order to get to know them.
Knowing your students well is such a vital part of building a classroom community. It helps with management, motivation, and shows your students that you really care about them as people. There's no better way to get to know a shy student than to ask him or her about something you already know they are interested in.
This year why not ask your students to tell you about themselves in a really cool and timely way. Everybody's tweeting! Why not take advantage of the familiar format of hashtags, tweets and trends to get a glimpse at your students' interests and goals.
I have used a sheet like this one with a lot of success in the past and I love to see the students react when they see that I'm not as un-cool as they might be expecting!
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