Feeds:
Posts
Comments

So, the great group experiment?

Has hit a snag. The snag is one of two things: either groups just don’t work for my first block, or my first block just doesn’t work for groups. Either way? They’re kaput.
I’ve learned from the experiment though. First off, never, ever, ever, ever (see how important this is) convince yourself that that you will be able to focus completely on the eight children who are supposed to be with you for the period and ignore the rest. Well, I suppose someone else could convince themselves of that without disaster, but I (and my class) really need me to be where I’m needed that day, not where I’m scheduled to be that day.

And trust me, needs? They rarely meet up with schedules.

On the plus side, I really love the curriculum I’ve been planning, so I’ve just tweaked it into a “lesson a day” format where we all work together. I’m really excited about the skills I’m teaching, but we just weren’t learning enough being in groups everyday–and I’m not willing to sacrifice three days out of four on some sort of busywork to keep kids out of my hair.

I also re-discovered my love for my toughest kids. These kids were driving me absolutely crazy during the groupwork. They wouldn’t sit still; they couldn’t finish anything on time; they just weren’t getting it. I was starting to get totally, completely, frustrated. And then I stopped my groups.

And I got my focused, lovely, occasionally snarky kids back. Thank god. I’d missed them.

Advertisements

One Response

  1. on 24/09/2007 at 1:58 am | Reply ms. whatsit

    Group work –I tell kids it’s social learning– is all about the classroom chemistry. Some classes slip right into it beautifully, while other classes lose the privledge completely. I tell those classes what a shame.

    I also find that a little bit of one-on-one time with the tough kids really pays off for the rest of the year. The trick is convincing the rest of the class to stay on-task, which is generally a hit or miss proposition.

    Control is an illusion, isn’t it?



Comments RSS

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

So, the great group experiment?

Has hit a snag. The snag is one of two things: either groups just don’t work for my first block, or my first block just doesn’t work for groups. Either way? They’re kaput.
I’ve learned from the experiment though. First off, never, ever, ever, ever (see how important this is) convince yourself that that you will be able to focus completely on the eight children who are supposed to be with you for the period and ignore the rest. Well, I suppose someone else could convince themselves of that without disaster, but I (and my class) really need me to be where I’m needed that day, not where I’m scheduled to be that day.

And trust me, needs? They rarely meet up with schedules.

On the plus side, I really love the curriculum I’ve been planning, so I’ve just tweaked it into a “lesson a day” format where we all work together. I’m really excited about the skills I’m teaching, but we just weren’t learning enough being in groups everyday–and I’m not willing to sacrifice three days out of four on some sort of busywork to keep kids out of my hair.

I also re-discovered my love for my toughest kids. These kids were driving me absolutely crazy during the groupwork. They wouldn’t sit still; they couldn’t finish anything on time; they just weren’t getting it. I was starting to get totally, completely, frustrated. And then I stopped my groups.

And I got my focused, lovely, occasionally snarky kids back. Thank god. I’d missed them.

Comments RSS

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

So, the great group experiment?

Has hit a snag. The snag is one of two things: either groups just don’t work for my first block, or my first block just doesn’t work for groups. Either way? They’re kaput.
I’ve learned from the experiment though. First off, never, ever, ever, ever (see how important this is) convince yourself that that you will be able to focus completely on the eight children who are supposed to be with you for the period and ignore the rest. Well, I suppose someone else could convince themselves of that without disaster, but I (and my class) really need me to be where I’m needed that day, not where I’m scheduled to be that day.

And trust me, needs? They rarely meet up with schedules.

On the plus side, I really love the curriculum I’ve been planning, so I’ve just tweaked it into a “lesson a day” format where we all work together. I’m really excited about the skills I’m teaching, but we just weren’t learning enough being in groups everyday–and I’m not willing to sacrifice three days out of four on some sort of busywork to keep kids out of my hair.

I also re-discovered my love for my toughest kids. These kids were driving me absolutely crazy during the groupwork. They wouldn’t sit still; they couldn’t finish anything on time; they just weren’t getting it. I was starting to get totally, completely, frustrated. And then I stopped my groups.

And I got my focused, lovely, occasionally snarky kids back. Thank god. I’d missed them.

Comments RSS

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: