> Learning through collaboration

Learning through collaboration

Student Story

Jane Lakeland
Healesville Cluster

David is a young boy in my grade 4 class. He is generally a very happy student who enjoys coming to school. He has a small but significant group of friends and he enjoys their company. He particularly likes playing outside and being involved in small group activities.

In maths, David tends to keep to himself and will not offer answers to questions when asked. He usually just shrugs his shoulders and says he doesn’t know the answer. I carefully try to pry information from him, but usually he just digs his heels in and says, “I don’t know”. He is easily distracted in the classroom and likes to spend time drawing and fidgeting with things on his desk.

I have realised that I need to make sure that all instructions are clear to all my students, especially David. I ask the students to relate the problem back to me in language that they understand. I will then ask David to repeat what another student has said, clarifying any points. I try to give them real life stories about a particular problem and this usually involves stories from my past and I make it funny – they love to hear about situations in my life that are real and funny.

I then use simple stories to solve problems and use the children in my class as part of the problem. They instinctively become more attuned to the maths sessions as they are involved and are a necessary component of the learning.

David now likes to work with his close peers and will participate in small group activities and achieve the required results for the session. I like to wander around the room and listen to the students as they discuss what the problems are about and how to solve them. Recently, Daniel and his team worked on an activity about decimals and mental maths on subtraction, using resources to help them...

Learning through collaboration

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