WOW – Term three has rolled along so quickly, and it’s time to look back and assess how my Inquiry into Oral Language Acquisition is going.
My students continue to need a lot of gifting of words. It’s often the little words – the ‘to’ ‘at’ ‘the’ words that get dropped from their sentences and I remind them. Often. As I was leaving the class one day I said (as I stood with the door open) 'I will return' and then asked 'Who knows what return means?' They had no idea. So here was another opportunity to gift a word (as well as the word 'enter' - just cos I could).
In my previous post I’d said that I would be working on getting the students to ask for clarification if they didn’t understand. I have set the scene for questioning like this…
During Maths I’d give a deliberately wrong answer and wait and see if anyone would ask why I’d said or done that. For example, if I wrote the number 7 on the whiteboard and put up 8 objects, who would question that? Or if the questions called for an addition symbol, I’d put a minus and would wait to see who’d challenge me on that. (Remember, these are 5 year-olds, so I’d keep it pretty simple). Initially they’d look confused, realizing I’d made a mistake but were reticent to say anything – after all, I am the teacher. Over the term I’ve encouraged them to speak up if they’re not sure and to question what they hear me say or see me do. It’s still in its infancy, but we’re making steps to realizing each child has a voice.
Here’s the new Guess What EE that I’ve created.We still play the ‘normal’ Guess Who, and my students continue to really enjoy it.
In Term Four I will need to ensure I take time to plan and have concrete evidence of increase in oral language acquisition. And before we know it, it’ll be the end of the year!!