Monday, April 13, 2015

Keeping Track


It's just one of those little things I normally do. Whenever a teacher leaves me notes of some sort (or gives us a chapter to read as a class), I take down the number of times I have to stop to get the class' attention.

Whenever there's a sub, the class will not stay focused. Sure, full-time teachers tell me to kick out the kid that is the ringleader. But when I'm in the class for one day, I have a hard time identifying who that might be. And besides, it's usually at least half the class that's talking while I'm trying to go over whatever material the class needs to get through that day.

So, rather than spin my wheels trying to figure out who to kick out or who to move, I just take a tally mark for each time the class starts talking again, necessitating that I stop and get their attention again.

7th grade science. The PowerPoint was on evolution.

I'm not sure why I didn't bring up the usual sheet of paper with me. I guess it was because I didn't have a podium. But at the third time I had to stop to get them to stop talking, I realized that the white board was right there. It wasn't like they were going to notice, right?

"What's that?"

Me: "I'm keeping track of the number of times I have to ask the class to stop talking."

And then a funny thing happened. The front of the room started to get worried. And tried to shush the talkers (who were in the back of the room). It didn't help much, but it made me think. I had not considered letting them see this tally before.

Perhaps I should let them know I'm doing this in the future. I could easily do it so they can see.

One class got to 11. The second class got to 19. And the third class got to 22. (The other classes had a different lesson.) When they knew I was leaving that number for their teacher...

What do you think? Should I let the classes know I'm keeping that tally? Do you prefer PowerPoints or Prezis?

Today's A to Z Challenge post brought to you by the letter...

This letter available for the giveaway

27 comments:

  1. Let them know! Then they will think you're leaving that total for the teacher and they'll get in trouble when she comes back.

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  2. Let them know! I used to do that as a sub, and it really helped with some of the classes. When they realized that I left notes for the teachers, sometimes with names, they quieted down quickly.

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    1. They should know I do this by now. Maybe that's why the older classes tend to be good for me?

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  3. I would let them know. Being in a position to start teaching youth, I totally see how handy this can be. :)

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  4. I am so naïve. I should go sit in on my grandkids classes to see how their teachers handle the little brats of today. When I went to school in the 1950's I don't remember too many unruly classrooms. We were sent to the principals office for a paddling.

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    1. I don't know if that would help today. Some of them would think it was a badge of courage.

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  5. Kids always take subs less seriously than their teacher. Who knows why. Maybe they think they'll get away with it if you're gone tomorrow, so I guess that means it's a good idea to let them know that they won't.

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  6. When I was in 7th grade we didn;t have PPT or computers or even word processors. Just good ol' fashioned type writers.

    Stephen Tremp
    A to Z Cohost
    Twitter: @StephenTremp

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    1. Oh yes, I remember. I wonder how different it would have been for us to have had PowerPoint lectures...

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  7. I'd say let them know...unless there's some reason you're supposed to do it undercover from the full-time teacher's perspective?

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    1. I'm probably the only sub that does it, so I don't see why anyone would care one way or the other if I did it publicly.

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  8. Another let them know from me... I'm not sure what Prezi is but anything is better than bad PowerPoint presentations. Or maybe teachers aren't as bad as teachers at putting them together.

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  9. Sure, let them know. Better to be in on what's going on, I think. Unless the rules prevent you from disclosing, but I'm pretty sure than's not the case.

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    1. Since I think I'm the only one doing it, I don't think there are rules against.

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  10. It might be interesting to keep letting them know.

    Yvonne

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    1. That seems to be the consensus. Thanks.

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  11. I prefer PowerPoints even though I love Prezis. Prezis offer a cooler, sleeker presentation, but I've had to many issues in the middle of a lesson or workshop.

    So, I go with old faithful.

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    1. Oh, interesting. Good to know they can be buggy.

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  12. I write points on the board. I have a happy side and a cranky side. I write names up too. Mind you my lot are only 10 years old and much more malleable.

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    1. Happy side and cranky side? That's brilliant.

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  13. I don't know. Letting the class know the tally could lead two ways. I'd save it for when they start reaching beyond 10 and then pull it out. In a, "you've gone to far, now wait till your father gets home" kinda way ;)

    You can find me here:
    ClarabelleRant

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    1. That's true. When things are going well, you don't want to rock the boat.

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  14. Hey, whatever works! Maybe they think there'll be some kind of punishment if it happens enough times?

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  15. I used to take part of their recess away. Of course, they were younger--fifth grade. I put tally marks on the board (for the whole class or sometimes an individual.) It worked. Kids love recess.

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    1. Try telling a 6th period class you're keeping them after school (even for a minute). Oh, the howls...

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  16. Oh I would let them know and knowing me, I would smile with evil intent-make them sweat:)

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  17. I think I would let them know. It might frighten them to behaving more.

    betty

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