Thursday, August 25, 2016

V is for Value

I believe that what we teach our students must have value. Without value, it is nothing but busy work and a waste of time for me, the student, and the taxpayers.

When planning lessons, I constantly ask myself what the purpose is for each activity. I need to make sure that each activity has value. One way that I do this is to brainstorm all the activities I can do to support a new skill or concept. Once I have the list, I will prioritize them by their value. Which ones will be the most effective? Which ones can be the most meaningful to my students? Then I try to choose the top three to five activities (depending on the time) to use in my lesson.

After I choose my activities, I try to write a procedure for each one. This helps me not forget all the steps involved. Sometimes I take it for granted that certain steps are known but usually find out that some students miss specific steps. This causes the activity to be either confusing or chaotic. By identifying all the steps needed, I can better meet the needs of all the students. I can even display the procedure to help students who need a visual along with the auditory directions. For students who know certain steps, they can move at their own pace without waiting for me to help them. Those students who need help can get it more easily since I will be available.

It is important for students to know the value of the lesson or activity. . Many times students get bored or shut down because they don’t understand why they are having to do something.
When students feel like there is some value to what they are learning, they are more willing to focus and apply themselves

How do you share the value of what you are teaching? Please share.

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