Reflection: ELL Students An Introduction to Problem Solving - The Swing Challenge - Section 3: Wrap-Up


For me, the best way approach language development and acquisition is incremental and integrated.  Grammar, writing, and reading comprehension are not distinct subject areas but are integrated into most of what I do.  This takes conscious planning and practice and over time I've been able to develop it into a habit.  During start of the year activities such as this one, I'm both collecting informal data about their oral language skills as well as building in informal supports.  For the students who need it, I use settings like this to model complete sentences and correct subject-verb agreement (for example) to their entire group, even though the ELL learner might b my target.  At the same time, I also strive to enrich them, not just because they are a group of gifted students but also because that is what every child deserves.  If they are comfortable with basic spoken English then I  always nudge them, each at their individual level, to add more to their answer.


Student:  We thought the swing wouldn't work but it did.

Teacher:  Why did you think it wouldn't work?

Student:  Because it was tippy.

Teacher:  What was tippy?

Student:  The blocks.

Teacher:  So, you thought the swing wouldn't work because the blocks were too tippy, but then you discovered that your structure/tower was more stable than you thought?

Student: Yeah. 

Teahcer;  I thought the swing wouldn't work (gestures to student)

Student:  I thought the swing wouldn't work...

Teahcer: because the blocks were too tippy...

Student:  because the blocks were too tippy..

(you get the idea!)

  Learning to Reflect Aloud
  ELL Students: Learning to Reflect Aloud
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An Introduction to Problem Solving - The Swing Challenge

Unit 1: Introduction to 3rd Grade Science
Lesson 2 of 4

Objective: SWBAT work collaboratively to complete a simple "engineering" task and they will describe challenges and successes.

Big Idea: Problem solving has as much to do with tenacity and process as it does with possessing a specific skill set.

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Science, Classroom Culture and Climate, Science Skills, design process, collaborative learning, problem solving, scientist, start of year 3rd grade
  60 minutes
problem solving temp lesson img 08 08 14 3982
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