Today while my kids were suffering through art (a topic for another post), I went to a first grade room in my role as a mentor teacher. I sat in on a math lesson, and couldn’t believe how restless and distracted the kids were. My four year olds sit in a circle and pay attention soooo much better than these six year olds!
The lesson went okay, but the teacher and I talked about it later and agreed that classroom management is the big issue. He said he was open to suggestions, and said that this feels like the first time that his classroom management skills aren’t doing the trick. I’ve been in his room before and I know that he is a good teacher — but this class! Wow!
I remember how they were last year in kindergarten — they were rolling around on the floor like puppies. All the kindergarten teachers would talk about how that group of kids seemed so self-centered, pampered, and immature. Now the first grade teachers are saying the same things.
So we talked about doing things in a more structured way, and using some of my organizational tricks to keep transitions at a minimum. And then I blurted out, “when I come back on Thursday, would you like me to teach the lesson, so you can watch?”
He said yes, of course. So now I have to get ready to teach a first grade math lesson to a group of wiggly worms, and make it useful to their teacher, as well. The good thing is that I had several of the kids in my class two years ago, and I know several more from all the time I spent in K last year as a mentor.
I’m kinda psyched. I like a good challenge.
But…perhaps this wasn’t the best week to give up caffeine?