Help!! I think my class is dead!! :)

Discussion in 'General Education' started by mb_teacher, Aug 30, 2011.

  1. mb_teacher

    mb_teacher Companion

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    Aug 30, 2011

    I love my class. I have a ton of great kids. My main behavior issue is talking. But, oh my word, sometimes, I think I'm teaching a bunch of corpses! Also, we are struggling with putting heads on desks. I've started the whole sit straight or stand policy. There are no naps in 4th, so you sit up or you stand up. This helps a little bit, but they still really struggle with wanting to lay their heads down. (And this is regardless of the hour or the day.)

    I try to make the class time energetic. I do my best to have a lot of interaction, but if I ever ask a question (Even AFTER I have them "stop, look, and listen" - their signal), you'd think they were hearing another language. And, I do utilize wait time.

    Another issue is lack of listening/comprehension. I have their eyes on me when I give directions. I have them lay their pencils and books down, as well. However, it never fails. I have 4-6 students who, after I've repeated the directions at least 2xs, have no earthly idea what I am talking about.
    I am going to start implementing the "Ask 3 Before Me" thing to try to alleviate this.

    So, here are the things that I do with my class:
    1) Wait time
    2) Pencils down, eyes on me, before I give directions
    3) Work the crowd/Walk the room
    4) Repeat the directions or question at least 2xs
    5) Have students repeat the directions or question on 3rd time

    I am just ready to pull my hair out with the lack of responsibility, the poor listening skills, and constant barrage of "what are we supposed to be doing?"
    What makes it harder is that the students who ask this almost always have their eyes on me, but they tune out.

    I'm sure there are some "tricks" either I don't know or haven't implemented yet. Any advice? Because, I honestly don't know what to do and I need to get this remedied soon if we're going to have a good year for academic growth!
     
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  3. JenPooh

    JenPooh Virtuoso

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    Aug 30, 2011

    Didn't the school year just start?

    My advice: be patient! Give them some time to get use to you and your expectations. Sometimes their brains are still on summer break when they come back.
     
  4. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Aug 30, 2011

    Sounds like my class! We sing morning songs & very few of them move at all. They just don't move when I want them to. Of course, there's a couple that never stop moving, thankfully, they sing along.

    I just keep telling myself that it is only day 7, give them time & then I'll be wishing they were this quiet.

    I get that whole I just gave you directions, now do it! I can say stand up & no one moves.

    It's only day 7.
     
  5. mb_teacher

    mb_teacher Companion

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    Aug 30, 2011

    It's such a hard time. You remember what your last class could do and you forget what they couldn't at the beginning.
    It's day 10 for us. I guess I just need to breathe. :)
     
  6. kbee1219

    kbee1219 Rookie

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    Aug 30, 2011

    Two possible suggestiosn have directions written somewhere so that you don't have to repeat them and try to do a game/ scavenger hunt where they have to move about.
     
  7. time out

    time out Comrade

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    Aug 31, 2011

    Agreed. Writing directions is extremely helpful, especially if there are multiple steps. Sometimes when I get blank stares after I ask a question, I ask them to discuss the answer with each other and then ask them in whole group again.
     
  8. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Aug 31, 2011

    When I had lethargic students or very energized students, I started my day with a little exercise or walk around the school.

    I type up my directions and give them to the students or display them for the students to see. I also number each step so that they can cross them off and focus on one step at a time.

    You may try the "Think, pair, share" or "Turn and Talk" strategy of asking a question. Letting the students think and then share with a partner or their table. Then call on a volunteer.
     
  9. runsw/scissors

    runsw/scissors Phenom

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    Aug 31, 2011

    When my class becomes lethargic, I have everyone stand up, push in their chairs, and do 20 jumping jacks. They usually enjoy it! Best of all they all perk up.
     
  10. mb_teacher

    mb_teacher Companion

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    Aug 31, 2011

    they HATE this. haha I have tried this and it does NOTHING. They do it, then immediately sit down and lay their heads down - despite knowing they have to stand behind their chairs if they lay down.
    Seriously. It's bizarre.
     
  11. Ambrosegirl84

    Ambrosegirl84 Companion

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    Aug 31, 2011

    This might not be practical, but someone once suggested using yoga balls as chairs to help with kids' concentration/coordination. They probably couldn't flop like ragdolls at their desks, anyway...
     

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