CURRICULUM AND TEACHING
This is a group of extremely challenging 8th graders. Out of 26 students only three are girls. Most of the kids shout out, are uncooperative, and very difficult to control. This week as part of a unit on study skills, the teacher was talking to them about the difference between active and passive listening. The kids got off on a tangent about teachers never listening to kids, but expecting kids to listen to them. The kids were really angry. For the last half of the period the teacher worked with them on appropriate and inappropriate responses and how to turn comments and conversations around so that teachers don't turn them off. The kids responded that all they wanted was a fair shake. They talked about creating win/win solutions, avoiding power struggles and using self-control. It was the best class this teacher had had with these kids.