1. (pg. 79) “The class as a whole became increasingly perceptive over the course of a discussion, their ideas building upon previously shared thoughts. Though the pace was slowed, the children shared more, and the variety of their ideas were higher than in other groups I’d observed where pausing was not a standard practice.”
2. (pg. 87) “Two technical strategies – pausing and paraphrasing – can make teachers better listeners.”
3. (pg. 93) “Pointing out children’s ‘learning histories’ involves comparing their current behavior to less skilled earlier behaviors. This reminds students that learning is an ongoing process, not simply an end product.”
1. I like the idea of pausing more. There is so much to get through in a day. It feels as though you are on a time crunch. You are….but at the end of the day, what really matters tends to be placed in the back burner and did every student really receive as much attention that they could have gotten or been taught in a manner that reaches them? Perhaps 10 out of 30 kids, but the rest might have fallen through the cracks. Something as simple as pausing during class talk could slow down the pace and allow for anxiety levels to go down for both the students and the teacher. I sensed this as I visited F Elementary as the teacher took time to really listen and even asked students to rephrase, draw pictures and explain themselves if she did not understand fully what they were communicating. The pause came as she sought to understand better. Having to teach in a language I am learning has made me into a better listener. If I do not take the time to pause, ask for students to say it again until I understand, I will not be able to teach effectively.
2. (connection/idea) As I read the section about learning histories, I thought about the students in the classroom I am student teaching in. Have they started making progress? I know they have, but with 30 kids, it can be hard to notice anything. I am challenged to notice one child per day and either write something to remind them of their progress or say something verbally to them to encourage them. This reminds me of the book Teaching Children to Care by Ruth Carney. Pointing out specific areas of growth and greatness in them can create intrinsic motivation. Also, instilling a sense of gratitude and thankfulness by being able to look to the past and compare with the present is so vital for resiliency.