Scripted Teaching

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by newday, Dec 20, 2013.

  1. newday

    newday Rookie

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2013
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0

    Dec 20, 2013

    Is anyone here teaching from a script? Any pointers or things to watch out for? Is it trickier to keep the student's motivational level up working from a script?
     
  2.  
  3. txmomteacher2

    txmomteacher2 Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2005
    Messages:
    2,078
    Likes Received:
    186

    Dec 20, 2013

    We teach from a script daily for our phonics lesson.We use Saxon phonics. I teacher kindergarten and last year I taught first grade. Yes it is very hard to keep them motivated during the lesson that I am teaching from the script. I do most of the script plus add some of my own stuff to the phonics lesson to make it interesting. One of my co workers in a another grade level makes a power point that follows the script of the lesson. She adds bells and whistles to make the lesson more engaging. When I taught first grade we did a lot of cooperative learning activities that I incorporated into the lesson. There are ways to make scripted lessons fun you just have to take the time to make them.
     
  4. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2013
    Messages:
    4,307
    Likes Received:
    887

    Dec 20, 2013

    I've taught scripted lessons before. They inevitably are wretched. Whenever I have "scripted curriculum," I take it, make it my own, and create my own lesson plan from it. Sometimes I use their exact activities, sometimes I don't.
     
  5. newday

    newday Rookie

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2013
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0

    Dec 20, 2013

    Thanks for the ideas, Txmomteacher2. Finding ways to jazz up the lessons sounds like a win for the situation.

    Gr3teacher, this is a new job and I'm starting it after being on hiatus for several years, so straying from the scripts is a no-go for me.

    When I was teaching before, it was fun when a spark of creativity would lead to a new and improved lesson. It may be hard to shut that down. But I hear scripted lessons are helpful for at-risk students, so that's encouraging.
     
  6. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Messages:
    2,418
    Likes Received:
    1,174

    Dec 20, 2013

    Personally, as a new full-time teacher, scripted curriculums are a life saver, as coming up with plans day-to-day otherwise is unbelievably time consuming, especially having started mid-year. However, what I usually do is read through the script for each portion, and will either write or think about my own script - either deleting/adding specific elements on that will make it fit our classroom and set of the kids the best. If I come up with creative extensions? Awesome. If not, I don't have to feel as bad.
     
  7. readingrules12

    readingrules12 Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2010
    Messages:
    3,314
    Likes Received:
    793

    Dec 20, 2013

    While I can understand some teachers enjoying teaching from a script, if I had to do that, I would switch to a school where I didn't have to read from a script. I don't think any child wants to hear a teacher read from a script. I tried it to please my former principal for a couple of weeks about 10 years ago. I hated it.

    It definitely kills the motivation factor IMO.
     
  8. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Messages:
    2,418
    Likes Received:
    1,174

    Dec 20, 2013

    In my subbing around schools, and other observations, I've never seen any teacher actually speaking word-for-word from a script. However, I see tons of teachers using a scripted curriculum.
     
  9. amethyst

    amethyst Companion

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2004
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    1

    Dec 20, 2013

    Yeah, this is what I think of when I hear of a "scripted" curriculum, but I honestly don't know. Do some of you read it word for word?
     
  10. GemStone

    GemStone Habitué

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2011
    Messages:
    819
    Likes Received:
    166

    Dec 20, 2013

    We are told to follow scripts for certain interventions exactly, and with fidelity, or the interventions are invalid. But they just mean what we teach for our intervention block.
     
  11. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2013
    Messages:
    4,307
    Likes Received:
    887

    Dec 20, 2013

    I'm glad I don't work at these schools y'all are describing. I can't imagine trying to ever teach a fully scripted lesson.

    Although one thing to consider is that even the most scripted interventions aren't actually meant to be scripted. The example I use is Language! That's considered a scripted curriculum... but they intentionally leave the reading block vague.

    The vast majority of scripted curriculums I've ever seen script activities, not actually the words you're supposed to say. I mean... the idea of a scripted intervention seems silly to me. Isn't the very point of an intervention to meet the needs of your students?
     
  12. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,653
    Likes Received:
    233

    Dec 20, 2013

    This is my experience. We use Saxon math, which is a scripted curriculum, but we do not teach from the script. I will read over it, see what the main points are, and figure out the way I want to present it.
     
  13. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Messages:
    2,418
    Likes Received:
    1,174

    Dec 20, 2013

    Exactly. Another example - we use Benchmark for our reading curriculum, which comes with a "script", but it is intentionally left open in many areas and I generally will use it as an outline and fit the rest to the needs of my students.
     
  14. EdEd

    EdEd Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2011
    Messages:
    3,787
    Likes Received:
    251

    Dec 20, 2013

    The idea of something being scripted means it takes the guess work out of the correct way to present everything from specific prompts to whole lessons. I do think some amount of modification and adaption is okay, and even called for frequently, but that really requires an intimate knowledge of actually how and why to present things certain ways.

    For example, someone mentioned a scripted phonics program before. Some programs use short phrases to prompt group response, such as, "What word?" followed by a gesture. I'm not sure that those exact two words, or the exact gesture in the script, are imperative. However, if a teacher were to modify the script and add a full sentence, or a confusing gesture, that might change things.

    Another example, on a bigger level, would be sequencing of sounds taught in a scripted curriculum. "Scripted" in that sense doesn't so much mean words to utter, but a protocol to follow. If a teacher were to arbitrarily change the letter ordering, that could mess things up in several ways, from introducing letters in a confusing order to making leveled text less effective.

    In terms of your comment about modification being the point of intervention, and the point of intervention to meet the needs of students, my perspective is that there are different types of intervention structures. A "Tier II" intervention, for example, may include less individualization in terms of lesson design, but the individualization has occurred through the very process of placing in a particular scripted curriculum. If a child didn't respond, more individualization of the curriculum may occur.

    Overall, I think scripted curricula are a good place to start in cases when more explicit instruction needs to occur. Teachers with a lot of training and experience in that particular skill area may be more comfortable breaking away from the script somewhat or completely, but it definitely serves its purpose as many classroom teachers don't necessarily have that specific level of training.
     
  15. GemStone

    GemStone Habitué

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2011
    Messages:
    819
    Likes Received:
    166

    Dec 20, 2013

    I agree with EdEd's points. I would like to add that many scripted interventions are research-based and the results are research-proven. For that reason, I follow the script in certain interventions. Some modifications may be necessary in the case of a child with an intellectual disability who doesn't understand multi-word questions or directions, for example.
     
  16. Mrs Teacher

    Mrs Teacher Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2012
    Messages:
    59
    Likes Received:
    1

    Dec 22, 2013

    I believe reading intervention programs like the Wilson program or Just Words are scripted and our intervention teachers follow them pretty much word for word. In terms of other curriculums, like a math or reading program, whenever I've had them in my building I've used them as a resource as opposed to a script. Every year my class has a variety of strengths and weaknesses and the script would never maximize the learning. Many of the curriculums have very useful ways to approach a concept though so it's nice to tweak.

    I'm at a school now where we have nothing. No textbooks, no curriculums, nothing. Just a copy of the common core state standards. It's a lot of work for us...
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. DreamerSeeker
Total: 222 (members: 4, guests: 190, robots: 28)
test