Thursday, November 6, 2008

Fifth Grade: Really Great.

Of course, it helped that I was in a very different school, a school in an affluent suburb with a normal-length school day, rather than school in a poor city with an 8-hour school day. (Ignore my misplaced modifiers. I know they are there, but lack the reserves for revision.)

I know that the extended school day is a theoretical boon to students, and I concede that the children may be better off at school than at home alone, or wherever else they might go after a short day. However, my experience thus far is that kids cannot handle 8 hours. They become tired, cranky, belligerent. Even with breaks such as enrichment activities and recess, they become overstimulated. It is too much for their young minds and growing bodies. A six-year-old burst into tears on Tuesday because, in the 7th hour of school, he missed his mommy and daddy. Another six-year-old started crying because she missed her brother by hour six. The seventh-graders just got distracted and mean.


Ann Forstie said...

Hey, that last paragraph sounds kind of like me after an eight-hour day at work. "Tired, cranky, and belligerent" pretty much sums it up.

Glad you had a good day! What exactly do you do with the students?

kStyle said...

I follow the teacher's lesson plans as best I can. I jump in and act like I know what I'm doing. :)

In some schools, there's so much discipline mgmt that I'm lucky to get 5 minutes' instruction. In others, I can teach like a normal teacher.

Yesterday I had to teach some fifth-grade math that I didn't recognize. They do math differently now. Let me ask, actually: Do you know what the "quotient method" is off the top of your head?

Ann Forstie said...

No. No, I do not. Enlighten, please!

(Love my word verification word: scheat.)

kStyle said...

Actually, I don't know either. Eventually I sort of gave up on the math lesson. I taught them about book manufacturing, though, and how the number of pages (including front matter and end matter) will always be divisible by 8.