What would you have done?

Yesterday I had a sub for my last two classes of the day. My lesson plans were for the most part the same as they would have been had I been in class – a form of “In your groups compare your results from last night’s assignment and then begin working on the new task”. The only difference was that I held off on the whole class discussions until today.

So, today each group was assigned one problem to present to the class. This went well, the kids explained their work. Other kids asked questions. Others shared alternate methods. I asked a few clarifying questions – of both the people presenting and the people in the audience.

Then a strange thing happened 8th period. As a student is explaining both the math and the thought process behind each step, he is pointing to the screen. This isn’t the strange part. What I found strange were “… and then she…” and “… here she wrote… “. Finally I had to stop him.

Who is this “she” you keep referring to?”

He points to one of his group members.

Why are we looking at her paper?”

He states that her work is easier to follow.

Humor me and toss your paper up there.

He does.

Blank.

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2 Responses to What would you have done?

  1. Jason Dyer says:

    I probably would have rebooted with the student, wrote a related problem on the board, and had him solve the problem with Socratic prompting from myself.

    (I mean, ok, fine, he didn’t finish the homework, and was trying to hide the fact. Hardly the first student in the history of classrooms. Give him the low grade but a chance to save face and lick his wounds.)

    Whether I would have him come up to the board and write or just have him prompt me exactly what to write would depend on the classroom environment.

  2. “Tonight your assignment is to do p. xyz #5 and see me after class.”

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