I just love this new blogging experience and my love was once again renewed last night when I posted about my problem with the kids being in groups. Within a few hours, I had 3 detailed, helpful, and thought provoking responses. Amazing. Thanks for the help, guys!
I have thought about it a lot throughout my day and I finally get it! It just took strangers across the internet to make me see what I wasn’t understanding before. Here is what I am taking away and working with from here:
1. Biggest and most important- if they are given engaging material at the appropriate level with clear directions and support- they will be on task a lot more than if those things aren’t met! I knew this, of course, but I do think I was trying to squeeze way too much into a shorter amount of time and not explaining to the kids how to do these kind of activities. I was asking how to get the kids to come to my level when I should have been going to their level first and then building them up to where I want them to be. I was looking at my problem from the wrong side! I am going to shorten the activities for the future, make sure they are engaging, and walk them through what they should be doing a lot more until they are ready for me to back off a big.
2. I want to come up with some sort of a reward for the learning they are doing. Maybe if they all are able to pass the assessment so they can keep each other accountable. The first time I will be working on this is tomorrow in class when they are doing a review activity for the unit test on Wednesday. I will let you know what I come up with and how it goes.
3. It is harder this year because it is better teaching. And doing your best teaching is hard work. And I will always have students who aren’t where I want them to be academically and behaviorally, but I have to keep working on this since they are doing something that isn’t familiar to them and forcing someone to think who has never had to before is hard work for them too.
Thank you thank you thank you for reading and supporting me. You amaze me!