- 3 years ago
- Wedding: September 2014
Please help me.
I teach juniors and seniors – and most of those classes are honors courses. I was given (at last minute, of course) one section of freshmen. I am in WAY over my head. I don’t understand this age group at all, I’m struggling to produce materials for the curriculum at an appropriate difficulty level, etc.
I have a few sweethearts in the class and a few really bright kids I gravitate towards. But collectively, these kids are weird, immature, obnoxious, and loud, and nothing that I have done so far has made them behave for class.
Every single day I plan for us to do all the reading in-class, then have a discussion, and then do some sort of group activity or a written reflection, just depending on the material. Every single day, they infuriate me before we’re done reading and I make them finish it silently, take home the discussion questions to answer as homework, then take a quiz to keep them accountable for the reading when they return. This isn’t working, for them or for me, but I literally can’t get them to do anything. We’ve had heart-to-hearts. I’ve reassigned seats – four times. I’ve played some games to get some energy out, allowed them to work together, etc.
It turns out, as I learned today, that I have already finished all of the readings required for the first nine weeks … in three weeks. Clearly, I was expecting them to move WAY faster than freshmen are prepared to move – totally my fault. I’m hoping that by slowing down DRAMATICALLY and walking them through literally everything, some of the acting out will diminish.
I’m going to hit the brakes and slow down the next few weeks by bringing in some outside reading sources and working on some writing skills, incorporating fun writing prompts and stuff.
Does anyone have any other suggestions? Game recommendations? Stuff to get them fired up about and hold a mock debate? Anything?