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Ressiting that telling tempation....

I've benn working hard at this little gem this year, resisting the urge to tell children rather than help them to find / work it out for themselves. The mathematics paper we're doing as a staff has highlighted the importance of this form me. Every time we tell a student how to work something out we then sometimes assume they have understood it yet research in the area of mathematics tells us they are not understanding it especially when we look at place value. I'm happy to dig out the research for anyone who's interested.

Anyhow my point is I've transferred this from maths to spelling, today we were looking at how to make a word into a plural and instead of explaining the rule and getting the children to practice it we brainstormed some nouns ending in O and then I got them to go away with a dictionary and try and work out what the pattern / rule was for turning these words into plurals. We'd already done some work using singpost letters and plurals, we're now looking at a few exceptions.

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A relatively simple idea I know and probably one most of you do everyday. I think sometimes though I overlook the need to give the children time to think about the problem and try and solve it themselves.

They did eventually get the pattern/rule. Before then however we tested a lot of the rules/patterns they had come up with using our Mimio. The children went back to the drawing board a few times as we discovered their rules/patterns didn't really work for most situations.

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I then asked was this easier or harder than our last lesson - harder was the resounding reply. I asked was it better than our last lesson - yes and why I asked - because we got to figure it out for ourselves, now we know it and understand it.

We went on to test out the rules/patterns they had decided on and used 'Power Teaching' to reinforce the new knowledge we had gained. A lesson worth celebrating I feel :)

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