So… as part of my responsibilities for a teacher I’m subbing for, I’m “co-teaching” a 7th grade ELA class. Basically, what this ends up meaning is I sit in class and watch the regular teacher teach and then assist students as needed as they work on their assignments. The class is currently exploring characterization, focusing on perspective right now. I love the short stories the teacher chose, and I think the activities he’s asking the students to do have merit. What I’m less impressed with is his delivery. There’s a lot of lecturing going on. Now, I get that school in the time of COVID is different; classroom interactions are limited, small group activities can’t really happen, and a lot of work is being done independently and online. That said, where’s the whole class discussion? Where’s the online collaboration? Where’s the student engagement?
I am not impressed. If I’m bored during most of these classes, what are the students experiencing? I know it’s hard. I know so many teachers this year are tired and burnt out. I know the curriculum had to be heavily modified last year, and that some of that has carried over to this year. Still. There are better ways to do this. I wish I had a chance to give it a try myself.