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Lesson Plans


RE: multiage classes

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Sears, Ellen (ESears.us)
Thu, 18 Dec 1997 00:14:22 -0500

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Gina,
The state of Kentucky has mandated ungraded primary for several years.
It is up to each school to decide on the arrangement. Right now our
school has classes of K-1's and 2-3's. There is one straight K class.
A few years ago, the K's were separate and we had 1-2's and 2-3's.

It makes no difference to me, the only class I seem to have a difficult
time with is the straight K. There is quite a bit of modeling in the
K-1 classes. My K class seems to lag behind, and there are many
activities that the K-1's do that the K's aren't ready for. This has
happened for 2 years with this class (different kids - I have my
theories...)

As for the others, every class is really multi-age, multi ability
anyway. When the students come to me, I don't know if they are K's or
1's - 2's or 3's. Most of our kids have been to preschool and so they
are familiar with a classroom setting - but it may take a few weeks to
settle in - same for everyone else.

In the fall, when we start with color - I alternate activities. Like
Mark - we do the modeling clay color wheel (love it - got it on the list
last year), the next year it may be something different. Introduction
for one, reinforcement for another.

My husband teaches one of the K-1 classes. Before he had a 1-2. As far
as the regular
classroom goes, I think it is a positive arrangement. There is less time
spent on classroom routine - at least half of the students will know how
the classroom runs - the youngers learn form them. Development usually
evens out over two years, it gives the kids more time. And for those
that may need one extra year (rare), it isn't considered 'being held
back'. there was some anxiety when all of this started - many teachers
have been hung up on the "what willI do with my second graders when the
third graders are doing math? How can I do my dinosaur unit every year
if half of the class has already had it?"

Good luck,
Ellen


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