Collaborative Study Hall

Discussion in 'Special Education' started by ryecal, Apr 7, 2011.

  1. ryecal

    ryecal Rookie

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    Apr 7, 2011

    I have heard of districts using collaborative study halls and was wondering if someone could tell me more about how they work?

    (the basics that I got out of another conversation was: Students receive instruction in an Inclusion classroom, then attend a collaborative SH with he Sp.Ed. teacher the next period to re-teach previous class, or work on other classes)
    Any thoughts?
     
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  3. Special-t

    Special-t Enthusiast

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    Apr 7, 2011

    Our district encourages having a Learning Center staffed by a sped and gen ed teacher - but we just don't have enough staff to make this happen. In my opinion, the optimal situation would be to have all kids who score below a certain number on state tests have at least one period of Learning Center per day (to improve skills, reinforce classroom instruction and help with homework).
     
  4. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Apr 8, 2011

    We have a study hall period like this. Basically, all the students are in an inclusion classroom. Then, for one period of the day, they see their special education teacher for reteaching, check of assignment notebook, help packing up, etc. We rearrange student schedules so that any student on a special education teachers caseload that needs a special study hall, has the same period available to meet with her/him.

    Mind you---not all special education students have a resource study hall and some only go a few times a week. For example, the special education teacher may meet with her students with math needs two days a week, reading needs two days a week, and behavior needs once a week.
     
  5. EmptyClassroom

    EmptyClassroom Rookie

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    Apr 18, 2011

    Study Skills

    My high school began offering a "Study Skills" elective for collaborative students several years ago. I've taught three sections of it myself and can tell you how I worked it and my own evaluation of it. First, it only works if your schedulers stick to the "rubric" for the class. In each class I've taught the counselors have, or have been bullied into, put other students in it. We split by grade and ability level--for example I've taught 11th grade collaborative study skills once, 11th grade resource study skills once, and 10th grade collab study skills once. Only the first 11-C course didn't have other grade level or ability level students in it--including 2 regular ed students! It's usually BD students they 'throw' in there so they can have a resource class, but still, it affects the class. Especially if it's a freshman or senior student with behavior problems anyway, and especially during work-from-another-class time.

    I developed my own format that included preteaching (in each case the core classes were taught later in the year, which I think was detrimental to the success of the class); teaching a study skill (notetaking, reading strategies, etc.); reading (we do a canned school-wide reading program for points); and application of the study skill in either work from another class, if they have it, or my own lessons. It's great for extensions and reteaching, esp. in tested areas. It's also a great class to "try" things with, since it's a little more informal when compared to a curriculum class. We did some stress management, some reward activities, and some test prep.

    The down side is that if you're not a very prepared teacher, or if you prefer a curriculum to follow, it can get out of control quickly as far as daily plans. I allotted 20 minutes / day to helping them on work from other classes, but they didn't always bring anything and I had to constantly do extra planning to make sure I had something for that time slot. there are times they have already covered something I brought in, or learn it quicker than I expected. In my case, several times I had students who felt it wasn't an important class because it was an elective. They wanted to slack off, and if you use it correctly there's little room for slackers. The problem is, with a lot of special ed students one student that's 'off' can throw off the entire class! In addition, if you're trying to cover all content areas for a grade level you have to either be familiar with, or be able to pull from, as many as 4 content standards for one class. If it's not your content area it requires even more prep time.

    I've also seen two other teachers in my school teach a "Study Skills" class that was more like a traditional study hall--one actually called it "an extra planning period," but there were kids in the room and she had to 'help them if they had anything.' With all the benefits the course could offer, one "slacker" teacher can throw it off for everyone. One of the Study Skills courses I had this year was made of students from the "study hall" class last year and it was a pain to get them to see it was a structured class full of important activities. So, my advice is to be careful who gets scheduled to teach it!

    If you have a say in scheduling, it's important that the class be scheduled later in the day (for reteaching, extended time, and homework help) and during the semester/trimester/time of the year that the bulk of the core curriculum is taught. I think it works well during testing time frames because you get those extra time slots to go over how to use accommodations, the test format, etc.
     
  6. ryecal

    ryecal Rookie

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    Apr 21, 2011

    Emptyclassroom: Excellent feedback!!! I have been struggling to create a "rubric" for the class as I forsee many of the problems that you have mentioned. Just before I read your post I told my director that I NEED to be included in the scheduling as I see the potential of a slacker teacher ruining the whole thing!! THANKS!!
     

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