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April 23, 2014

I wonder...(and 6th graders pics and survey)

The surveys including and the one I did with the 6th graders (below) made me wonder about various aspects of my work with children. The survey for 6th grade is embedded below for those interested.

Pree said that the one thing she learnt well this year was listening. Listening to each other (and peer learning) was an important aspect of our classroom environment, but for Pree to notice this as her best learning for the year felt special. I wonder if I would have emphasized listening as something I work on, if she had not reminded me.

My best classes have been when I have been happy and calm. When some children say - a teacher should teach well and offer no explanation, I wonder if they are trying to refer to what they want us to be, rather than what they want us to do.

A very large number of children seem to care about how the teacher feels about them (and not what their own classmates think of them). I wonder if I utilize this to always help them grow.

Almost all the children I work with enjoy math, I wonder if they always enjoyed Math or our definition of what constitutes Math makes them feel this way.

I saw the grit in children I worked intensively with grow significantly over the year. I wonder if I can figure out what I did right to achieve this.

I went to the furthest village where the children come from to IA school and met their guardians. I wonder, if I should step in for the 6th grader whose grand-mom is going to send her to the local government school because the she feels she will no longer be able to afford the child's bus fare.

Background of work with 6th graders @ Udavi:
@Udavi my work with the 10th graders in the first term enabled me to see that gaps in learning of abstract concepts in 6th and 7th grade fail to get filled. I then focused on these two grades in the other two terms. 
The 6th graders had a lot more freedom and flexibility in the classroom and I tapped this to work with games - short mental board games, pizza games, (dis-)entanglement puzzles. Moving towards stories of multiplication and its equivalent two division stories, integers, fractions, decimals, areas with geoboard, cartesian divers, introduction to algebra and many puzzles. 
I worked closely with the class teacher Sudhir and we worked a fair bit on classroom environment where children could listen to each other e.g. multiplication stories and convert it to division stories. We were also able to wait out conversations to subside on their own when the children realized that the class was waiting for them.


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