Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Favorite comments of '15: Anonymouses, Barry Garelick, lgm, and concerned

On Boredom and time sinks in child-centered classrooms:

Anonymous said...
And here's the thing: it's one thing to be bored because you have finished the work quickly. At least then, you can be alone with your thoughts or with a free choice book. It's another level of awful to be bored by a clunky process of "exploration" and student-led discussion.

Barry Garelick said...
A recent twitter dialogue that I read had Dan Meyer (aka dy/Dan) talking about how the open-ended question "Come up with an equation with 5 and 3" is worthwhile. He stated:

"Kids like those questions because they feel creative in math class. They're exposed to other students thinking. They get the generation effect with minimal extraneous load. They get to see lots of worked examples..." and so on.

In my experience some kids may like it, but many tune out. If it's welcomed it's because it's a good way to pass the time until class is over. They get to talk, to BS a bit, and "feel creative" but not much math is learned.

Auntie Ann said...
Kids love class when the feel like they are getting away with blowing the whole thing off, when they think they are pulling one over on their teachers, and when they instead spend the day chatting and gossiping. Yes, kids love that.

It's torture on the kids who actually want to learn something, but for the majority, it certainly is "fun",

lgm said...
It is a waste of time for a proficient student to be sitting in a whole class discussion with students who are academically behind. Those students do not learn from the solutions offered by others, and disrupt instead of respectfully listen. They get angry, and they take their anger out on the proficient students when the aides dont have quick reflexes. With whole class, the on grade level or advanced child cannot leave and do his personal project. He must retreat into his mind. Is that what we want? Our top children to zone out, never working at school in their zpd?

Anonymous said...
I didn't find out until college that I was offered acceleration - skipping first grade - but all of my 1-8 teachers obviously knew, because they all were fine with my reading/working on my own in class - and would make suggestions for new books. They'd just tell me which page/problem/paragraph to read/solve at board etc. I learned far more that way than I ever would have, if I had been expected to pay attention to material I already knew. Today's group work would have been torture. My own kids hated it, and they were in leveled classes most of the time.

concerned said...
Students can be cognitively engaged in group settings and individually, but some administrators (evaluators) seem to believe that cognitive engagement can only happen in a group setting or through student to student interaction.

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