My class is diverse, curious, intelligent and extremely active! Their favorite activities include reading the book Wonder, participating in math number talks, studying mealworms and running relay races. As class at a Title 1 school in Oakland, we build community as we eat breakfast together every morning.
Most of my students are from Oakland, but their families come from all around the world.
Over 2/3 of my 28 students are bilingual as they speak another language besides English at home. Many of my students walk to school every day and have siblings in our school.
My students love group work, but have not mastered using an appropriate voice level. As a result of this and having 29 of us in one classroom altogether, the volume gets very loud each time we do group or partner work. Thus, a few students usually seek corners of the classroom to find a slightly quieter place to work, or cover their ears.
I have borrowed one hear yourself phone from another teacher and my students both love it and it works in reducing their voice level.
The phone is essentially and empty tube and works by acting as a sound chamber: the sounds from one’s voice goes directly to one’s ear. Thus, if students talk louder than an appropriate indoor voice, the sound is too loud for their ears, training them to talk quieter.
The phone is also useful during independent reading for students who like to read out loud. The phone helps students talk quieter so they don’t distract their neighbors who are also reading.
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