September 10, 2018 at 10:04 am #12348
What is important to you about education/learning – revisited. Research books, internet, journals, documentation related to your chosen topic. Write a forum post in the new forum engaging with your research and using Harvard referencing to reference your sources.
September 12, 2018 at 5:40 pm #12359
During my experience in primary schools, it had become important to me the seemingly low amount that children who are of lower ability are supported in mainstream schools.
Due to pressure to ensure that children pass tests at a young age, some children who should be receiving more support, have been given less and have been left behind due to not being able to understand as well as others.
This interests me as I was one of these children myself and felt, had I been given more support, I could have progressed quicker and my confidence could have been boosted.
I often find, for children who are lower ability or SEN, teaching assistants are used in giving extra support. This may give the teacher more time to spend with children who will meet the government’s expectations but this can make an already concerning situation where a child is confused and not matching up to the standards set before them.
The Guardian (2016) states, “All too often, TAs can fall into the trap of becoming surrogate friends for vulnerable young people, who then become ostracised from their peers as a result.” This means that children find it almost impossible to complete tasks and begin to rely on the help that they get rather than being independent and learning good problem-solving skills. This can mean that their peers see them as less than themselves due to the amount of support that they are receiving. In a school I was in as a student, a capable child was isolated from their peers because they were taken out of normal lessons for extra support daily. This means children can lose confidence and self-esteem.
Being placed into low ability sets is also demoralising for children in schools. According to TES (2018), “while small achievement gains may be made by higher-attaining students, the impact on students in lower-attaining groups is negative.”
I believe that all students should be taught in mixed ability groups in order for children to be able to support one another and feel confident to ask questions and solve problems together, using each other’s strengths and weaknesses. This would allow children that were low ability to learn at the same speed as others while learning to be confident in themselves, learn social skills and to be independent.
The Guardian (2016) Secret Teaching Assistant: We end up hindering the pupils we are meant to help. Available from https://www.theguardian.com/teacher-network/2016/nov/12/secret-teaching-assistant-we-end-up-hindering-the-pupils-were-meant-to-help (Accessed 12th September 2018).
Tes (2018) Schools are harming low-ability pupils’ chances by teaching in sets, academics say. Available from https://www.tes.com/news/schools-are-harming-low-ability-pupils-chances-teaching-sets-academics-say (accessed 12th September 2018)
September 14, 2018 at 9:01 am #12362
This is a well-written post. You have integrated the references well and used them as starting points for your own opinion. Well done!
September 14, 2018 at 1:47 pm #12365
Something that really interests me in education and learning is the use of mindfulness in helping students
This was something that was recently implemented at my nursery and I have seen it have an effect on children from ages one to eleven. Being often able to watch the sessions myself it was really interesting to see how the children reacted. Something that I noticed was that the children who were part of the school club began requesting a session before they went to school on a morning and again when they finished to the point where parents were also coming in to ask about doing it at home. They claimed that the felt much calmer and a change in their behaviour was noticed by myself and other staff.
Children are under a lot of pressure at the moment whether, from home, school or from just general growing up and I find it fascinating that something so simple can help them deal with all of this stress and also allows them to take time out in order to focus on their feelings.
The Huffington Post (2016) quotes “One of the nice things about mindfulness is that it’s not a treatment as such, it’s mental skills training for the mind” This is one of the reasons that mindfulness has such potential; it allows children to build up a skillset that will help them for the rest of their life. If a child is able to understand that their wellbeing is important then it sets them up to be able cope better with different thoughts and feelings as they grow up. In agreement with this, project director of the Mindfulness in Schools Project, Claire Kelly, states that “Passing these skills on to the children helps them cope positively and calmly with what life throws at them”
I believe that teaching children the foundations for self-help and techniques such as mindfulness are so important in developing a child’s awareness of not only their own well-being but that of others too.
Dr Williams of clinical psychology at Oxford, citied in The Huffington Post https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2016/02/17/mindfulness-schools-good-mental-health-children-_n_9184916.html
Claire Kelly, cited on The BBC, https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-35688048
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