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Re: 7th graders


Date: Wed Nov 01 2000 - 13:15:46 PST

> Hi! I know we have talked about this a thousand times-
> but does anyone out there love teaching seventh
> graders? snip (Jayna Ledbetter's message)

At our middle school we call them the hormones wearing sneakers
group. These kids are the ones growing too fast or too slowly;
getting messages from their bodies that are all new...and what to do?
They are chaotic. I find they respond best to the most stringent
controls. I list the day's assignment on the board, read it to them,
ask them to repeat it back to me, etc. They need to learn how to
listen but the noise in their heads and from the aforesaid bodies is
drowning us out! Slow down, simplify, repeat things many times, many
ways. Does each child have a notebook? Have them spend five minutes
at the end of class copying the assignment down from the board, then
ask them to respond to the assignment: What I am going to do is -
think through before they get materials. Keep materials simple. Lots
of drawing (Use the exercises in the Right Side of the Brain). They
are so upset about looking stupid in front of friends. Peers are
everything to this crowd. Occasionally do a craft that allows
universal success (hand made books are good). Divide the class into
three short segments that match their short attention spans. I use
some kindergarten techniques! Oddly enough, this group wants to pose
for figure drawing! They love to show off. I have some dress up
items, like hats, masks, to vary the look of the model. Yesterday we
had tons of witches to draw (0ur kids can wear their costumes to
school). Hope this helps. Jane in Brooklyn