Helping ALL Learners

SMART Chapter 5 had a couple different strategies for benefiting all students in the classroom that I found most influential. The first strategy is called the New American Lecture. The teacher provides each student with a graphic organizer that outlines the lesson for the day, and after lecturing for about 7 minutes while the students follow along with the outline, the teacher stops and asks students follow up questions to make sure they are grasping the major concepts. Differentiation can be made for students regarding the graphic organizers, because those students who do not need as much assistance taking notes and following along can be instead encouraged to take down their own notes. This strategy is beneficial for all students, but especially those with short attention spans as the teacher is constantly stopping every 7 minutes after lecturing to engage the class in discussion.

Another important strategy that was fleshed out in this chapter is meaningful grouping through teacher-led small group discussions. Small groups can be organized by readiness level, allowing the teacher to make changes to instruction where needed. An interesting concept about small groups that this chapter brought up is that it “allows teachers to work both backwards and forwards with students who have high potential but also may have gaps in their learning.” The teacher-led aspect of this strategy also allows for the teacher to individually get to know her students and their needs, and allow the students to feel important in the classroom rather than a small part of a whole.