Friday, August 10, 2012

My final semester

It has been a few weeks (or so) since I last posted, and since then I have started back at uni for my FINAL semester (yes, I am excited) which so far has been lots of fun. This semester is shaped some what differently, with most of our assignments centring around interventions that are undertaken in our placement classrooms. I am especially excited about my maths intervention which involves working with four grade one students who need extension in maths. At the moment, the classes topic is money, so over the last couple of days I have been assessing the students to see what they can and cannot do, thus identifying where they are conceptually. They are such a lovely group to work with, and they always try to challenge themselves and are not fearful of making mistakes which is refreshing.

When looking for specific activities to engage them, I came across this fantastic kit on teachers pay teachers. It includes some really fun and challenging games which the students have loved. Below is a photo of one of the resources. This cube (which has a different coin on each side) came with no instructions, however I decided that I would make one for each student (I highly recommend laminating them as the students can be a little rough with them). The only instructions that I gave the students was that they needed to roll the dice and record the coins that appeared and then calculate the total. Once they were comfortable, they were encouraged to add extra coins, and this challenge motivated them and pushed them to see what they could achieve. It was intriguing to watch, as they would keep adding more and more coins, continuously push themselves to see how far they could go. Two students even decided to use different operations to see what would happen to the total.

Until now, I have always conducted interventions with students who are falling behind, and I am finding it so different to work with students who are working far beyond the expected level for their age. Instead of trying to 'fix' something, my role is to help the students to challenge themselves, and provide new learning opportunities and this is such an exciting process.

I could write forever about this so I'll stop, but soon I will write about my literacy intervention (focusing on written vocabulary) and also my designing personalised learning project (which is centered around leadership and dance).

Tomorrow I am also going to the TeachMeet in Melbourne at the Immigration Museum, so I will be sure to write a post about that as well.


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