Assistant teacher course/Reinventing the wheel
Reinventing the wheel
An important goal of the course is to allow the assistant teachers to form a solid understanding of their new office and its obligations and goals. While it is commonly seen as an anti-pattern to reinvent the wheel it appears to be a good way to allow the pupils to come to a good understanding of their work. This unit aims to guide the assistant teachers to deduce and to document important aspects of their office by themselves.
Future participants may have had the opportunity to observe assistant teachers in their own class during fifth grade to seventh grade already. They can be asked to describe their own observations and to be inventive.
It is recommended to discuss the two questions for a while to allow everybody to better relate to the topic and then to go into detail questions in group work or solitary work.
The participants can work alone or in groups and write down their ideas.
The participants can be invited to try out their ideas if the group shows undesirable behavior: Are pupils inattentive? What can be done for them? Two or three pupils in a room can be invited to show notable disinterest after a while. How do the participants react?
The course instructors should explain the situation afterwards and, should anybody have reacted to the challenge, let the pupils who did react explain what they did and why. The answers may be simple but may allow the whole group to better relate to the topic.
Has a group or invidiual been unproductive? The participants should verify if their neighbors have been more inventive or less inventive. If there are groups or individuals who appear to need help the groups should be changed accordingly. At the end of the unit every single participant should be able to take the view that he did help to define and to understand what the assistant teacher office actually is.
The course instructors can collect and discuss some of the ideas that were written down. Working groups can name speakers who represent their groups.
The results should be discussed again.
The results should be discussed. If the pupils have invented different ideas and views the course instructor can try to assemble different models from the ideas (e.g. direct democratic approach, representative approach, teacher-guided approach)
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