What to do when they finish early?

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by Mrs. Q, Sep 12, 2010.

  1. Mrs. Q

    Mrs. Q Cohort

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    Sep 12, 2010

    No, I'm not talking about with a day's work. I assigned a fairly major project and gave the kids a due date a little over a week from the day I assigned it. I have a ton of Title I kids who go home and baby-sit or work a full-time job to help pay for groceries. I know they don't all have time to go home and work on something that involved, and a lot don't have computers to do the research they needed to do, so I built in several class periods of work days so they all have plenty of time to finish it.

    So what do I do with the ones who went home that night and worked on it for hours and now they have nothing to do in class? I can't move up the deadline b/c those kids who can't work at home need those work days. But I don't want the ones who've finished to be talking and blowing off that class time this week. It seems unfair to add an extra assignment just b/c they finished early.

    Any thoughts? Opinions?
     
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  3. Sshintaku

    Sshintaku Comrade

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    Sep 12, 2010

    In those cases, I've given extra credit options (I know that's taboo for some folks). Generally the kids that have put in the effort to finish early will take the offer, and then they have something to do. Or if they're missing work, ask them to make it up.
     
  4. dovian

    dovian Comrade

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    Sep 13, 2010

    I have had a similar situation in my drama class, where I assign something that I want done in class and they want to take it home to work on. I have to make it very clear that since this is a GROUP project they have to work on it AS A GROUP, which means in class.

    Are you giving them enough time in class to do the whole project? Because if so I would just make it a class project, rather than a home assignment. Or, if not, instead of spacing out the project days, do maybe two class periods at the beginning of the time and then leave it up to them to do the rest by the deadline. I teach in a Title One school also and although I realize that many of my students might not have technology access, or have to work or have other complications, I also think that by 11th grade they should have developed some coping skills to get done what they need to do. If you think they will need more time to go to the school library for research, for example, you could give more time for your next assignment to allow for that, rather than class days. Most kids will find a way to get it done. I get very few sob stories.
     
  5. Mrs. Q

    Mrs. Q Cohort

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    Sep 13, 2010

    I think you're right, dovian, and next time I won't schedule so many class days. I don't think they are used to having any class time to work on projects, so I went way too far in the other direction. What's done is done for this project, so I'm just encouraging them to find something constructive to do with their time, since only one or two have already finished. If more are done tomorrow, I may offer the extra credit as something for them to do over that final day before the project is due. Thanks guys! :)
     
  6. Rockguykev

    Rockguykev Connoisseur

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    Sep 15, 2010

    I often have kids finish their Choose Your Own Adventure packets early. My solution is to offer not only extra credit but points toward our class game for any extra assignments done. The beauty of CYOA is that I don't have to design anything new for them to do, they just pick another assignment off the wall.
     
  7. Mrs. Q

    Mrs. Q Cohort

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    Sep 15, 2010

    Are the CYOA just packets you have pre-made with different activities in them? I would love to know more!
     

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