Isn't it strange how something small can make such a difference in so many ways.
My music lessons are only 40 min long and by the time the students have arrived and entered the class this is very often cut down to 35 mins, add in the fact that I only see them once a week, recapping previous weeks lessons to get them back on track, me changing the lesson aides and smartboard program back to the beginning, normal classroom life of don't sit there, move away from him, stop annoying her, the actual teaching time is now down to 30 min............... you can see the problem !!!!
Enter Christine my RISE buddy. With one simple suggestion many of these problems have been simplified. Don't get me wrong it doesn't add any more time to my lesson, but it does enable me to get things flowing a bit better. Her suggestion is not only simple but also smacks you in the face with the thought of : So why didn't I think of that !!!!
Her suggestion : Have the students turn to each other and get them to tell eachother what they learnt about last week. BRILLANT !!!!!! This small little change has made such a difference. I went a little step further by prompting students with leading questions : Tell your partner ......., Explain to your partner why .......... I have actually heard the voices of students in the class who would never have answered the questions out loud in front of a class before. I have even heard two students arguing with each other as to why a flute is a woodwind instrument and not a brass instrument. There was a pretty good case for both sides. Through the excited buzzing of little voices I can actually see that they do know what happened last week and can tell someone all about it. YESSSSSSSSS (fist pump in the air)........ I did teach them something !!!!!!!
This small change also gives me a chance to reset the lesson for the current class ( as I teach the same lesson three times in a row for the three classes per year group ) without them sitting there watching and waiting.
Soooooooooo.... thanks Christine for that small effective and amazingly simple tip.
A small change does make a BIG difference.