September 25, 2011

Week 7 Focus: Structured Participation

This past week's focus was structured participation. I am lucky enough to have a handful of students who are always participating and volunteering to share their work on the whiteboard for the class. However, I noticed that I am doing a poor job of checking for understanding with my more reserved students. My solution: call on every student in each of my classes. Enter my focus.

How does one keep track of participation? I decided to make a copy of my seating chart and put it in a page protector. In one class period, I was able to check off every student's name (that means everyone answered one of my questions). Great! Except, I now see that the real battle will be getting each student to come up to the whiteboard. So after one day, I turned my attention to the boardwork. I think it's easy for me to call on every student to answer questions, but I find it harder to get each student up to the whiteboard. For now, I will continue to use my seating chart to track participation.

How do other teachers track participation? And maybe I am digressing a little, but what are some different ways you check for understanding?

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