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Seating Charts | Posted in New Teachers
I teach third grade so I can only give an elementary perspective. I have always with the exception of one time assigned seating spots to my students. I always start the school year in desk pods usually four to five to a pod depending on how many students I have. This year I have 18. There have been years when I had to make quick adjustments because certain kids just can't sit together. I like the beginning of the year to go as smoothly as possible with setting expectations and instilling good habits. I do keep students who need more help or direction closer to the front but I mixed them up with other students so they don't feel singled out. I never seat students by learning ability. When I was in elementary school I did have a teacher who did this and I always felt bad for the lower kids because we all knew they were the lower kids. Unless we are doing state testing, I never put my students in the traditional rows. This is my least favorite way to set up a classroom.
The one time I let my students pick their spots was when I taught 4th grade. Overall they were a good class so I decided to try it out. It ended up with boys sitting with boys and girls sitting with girls. They promised me they would behave so I wouldn't change their spots. They were good for about 3 days and then I could see they couldn't handle it. Once I had them back in assigned seating they were back to their old selves. Don't be afraid to move kids if needed.
Increasing Student Engagement in Science Lessons | Posted in General Science and Teaching
I am a first semester student teacher in Houston Texas. I have to say that I love using Kahoots. I remember using them in many of my college courses which made it fun and exciting. Recently, my cooperating teacher and I had a training where we learned about another program that is similar to Kahoots which I think you might like as well. It is called Quizziz. The difference that I found interesting was that when using Quizziz, the teacher could assign the students "homework." This would allow the students, if they can, practice for tests at home on their own time.
We tried it out just today in the classroom as a quick test and the students absolutely enjoyed it. At the end of each class, all the students had asked if we could use this more often for future tests.
Implementing STEM in my classroom | Posted in STEM
Hello Leslie! I'm also currently working with kindergarteners for my student teaching. I think that one easy way to implement STEM in a classroom would be to start off small by using the kind of language you would hear in a science classroom. Using vocabulary such as "experiment, predict, and observation" are just small ways you could implement STEM. Additionally, you could think about the kinds of lessons that you are presenting to your students. You could think about which of your lessons could be presented as a problem or a question that students can explore. By doing this, your curious, little learners can think about problem solving and research.
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