Hope you're well. I would say that the way that I embed E & D into my sessions is not only through group discussion as you asked, but I would say its more about working in a 'student-centred' way; providing a space for safe and respectful exploration of students perspectives. Hopefully that says something useful.
A mixture of all three for me! I have a pretty diverse group [in many ways] and often subjects just crop up or are brought into the class discussions - or usual work etc.
Then I use topics - so that I/they can gather evidence for their Personal, Social and Employability skills portfolios - which I find the most useful and they actually like to debate and tackle these different topics or issues [or potential issues].
Quite often the college has specific weeks - e.g. the other week was 'Be Healthy' week - but from that we discussed all manner of diverse topics - some of which required an understanding of equality also - such as discussing Mental Health. There were lots of useful resources that I could tap into and also links to other sites were given that not only I got gain info from - but the students could also further research this. I think that encouraging a lot of independent research is good for them and they enjoy doing this also.
I find the inclusion of global matters as well as local things - can be very good - e.g. looking at Fair Trade goods - and how the items we eat - or wear, reach our shops. Where do those designer jeans come from? etc.
Hope this is of some use :) x
Hope you are feeling better today!
How do you fit in E and D into a more practical, creative yet hands on subject like your music? I'd be interested to know because it would be good to look at it from a different angle to English/maths etc - although written work etc must come into the learning laso.
Many thanks for this - I'll have a look! Sounds interesting and might be useful to make the more mundane parts of the students' learning - more interesting for them, so might motivate them more.
Thought I would pick up on E&D in a more practical subject. I have found that an awareness of E&D is necessary at the very start of my course particularly in choosing repertoire. My choir is made up of 60 students with an extremely wide profile. As well as age (FE - mature HE) they also have a very varied musical background, this means for example that their reading skills will be very diverse, some experienced first study classical singers and some jazz musicians more used to improvisation, many would not have sung in choirs at all. It has been important to choose music to inspire all, challenge others and ensure everyone has the opportunity to achieve appropriate assessments. Have I done this? I think I will find out soon.
I presume that you are constantly assessing the relevance of particular texts to your students in English courses?
It's tricky ,really! Some topics tick boxes for all the learners (music, shopping) - I did a session around Easter - waned to teach learners about life in England, but needed to make it inclusive when there are different faiths in the class. I think encouraging them to express their opinions and preferences, and showing by example that all contributions are welcome is my approach. The thing that everyone loved about Easter, and all had in common, was 1)loving time off work - yay! 2) BBQs 3) spending time with friends and family. The conclusion we always come to is that we're all the same, but different.It must be hard choosing music that everyone will enjoy and feel challenged, but not threatened by!
The idea of being threatened by particular forms of music is interesting, particularly in relation to your comments on Easter. There is a wealth of repertoire in western classical music that is sacred having its origins within the church. These texts can of course be challenging for many who do not hold a christian viewpoint and it is important to include texts both secular and from other religions, however I think I have come to the conclusion that we cannot ignore the sheer volume and quality of music produced in the western sacred tradition and I find myself certainly not apologising for the balance of music in this tradition. Ill probably regret bringing up the subject of religion - Rebecca started it!
That's really interesting and must be a real challenge for you? [Though from within that diverseness - you must come up with some really lovely ideas, and richness of music - that all can share and learn from ].
I 'm always interested in involving and including creativity within my sessions as Literacy is everywhere so it can be relayed back to others in a multitude of ways - whereas if you have to stick strongly to an English syllabus [as an example] - it could be a bit more diffiult, though still could be done I guess.
Maths can also be incorporated and delivered through a variety of means - it just takes longer to organise and deliver but once you've sussed it - you can use and adapt the same resources to be used again and again [it may just take longer as it's me - and I'm not as strong with my own maths!!]
I'm now thinking that music would be another excellent channel to use more widely in my sessions. It reaches out and touches us all in one way or another. Also for the youngsters, music is highly important so it would allow some of their interests to be included in the classroom and that always works well.
Going back to your question about the English assessing of appropriate texts and so forth - yes I do and so it doesn't now seem so different from what you have said you need to do with your variety of musicians. I like where you have added that you choose to: 'inspire all, challenge others and ensure everyone has the opportunity to achieve' - this to me says it all!!
Many thanks Simon.
I'm feeling much better thanks.
This is quite hard to relate to what I do. The majority of my teaching experienced is either as a practical workshop facilitator, demonstrating or trying to get them to do new things in group activities, or supervising/assisting students whilst they get on with work.
Recording is very problematic what with temperamental equipment having to rely on people’s performance skills. So different challenges pop up all the time. In tech lessons I have a group of 8 students recording in one studio. Usually only one or two students are actively working/engaged with the equipment. So I try to ensure they rotate regularly and the inactive students are responsible for overseeing the work of the working techs. I continually ask them to explain why they are doing processes the way they are and whenever the students hit a stumbling block I encourage others to respond. I only interject when necessary and even then I try to direct them to their discovery rather than just informing them.
Because it’s very hands on and the skill range is very broad. I assess the students individually by what I know they can do and they have demonstrated. I try to ensure that the more advanced have new challenges (and I often give them additional advise in free periods) but I have to prioritise making sure the weaker students are developing in-line with the group and not lagging behind.
Recently I have used directed discussion, check-list handouts, and minute papers to check on their subject understanding and satisfaction.
I have struggled to get the students to really open up in discussion. Because music is very personal some of them don't want to put there perspectives out there for fear of being shot down, and no one really wants to be standing on other peoples toes.
Another contributing factor to my confusion is that the School only started running BTec music this year. The other teachers have expressed how they are finding it hard to manage something so practical.
It does not stack up next to A level music in terms of academic work load and assessment.
Sorry for the delay in responding. I'm not sure if this is even what you asked about but hope it's of some use. Hope you are well.
My turn to apologise for the delay now! Glad you are feeling better.
What you have written is very useful - thank you. It must be very difficult to organise!! It sounds like it is differentiated so is dealing with a range of different knowledge bases and abilities.
I like the idea of the rotation - that might be something that I could transfer over so that I maybe I could have a selection of English [or maths] activities - at different tables and students could work and move around them. It would be a different approach and with the movement and variety of times spent at each table, it would help with their concentrations also - it could work!!
I need to remember this!!
Many thanks Stuart
My friend who is currently studying for masters in occupational theory said that recently they had a session. which involved them entering a hall to find different tables/stations set up with an ipad loaded with an interactive guide, dismantle-able models and pictures. The students were left to work through each station one at a time in small groups.
My friend found this to be an incredibly exciting experience and much preferred it to the usual didactic sessions they tend to receive on her course.
The teacher had facilitated what they believed to be the necessary resources for the students to investigate and discover the necessary learning outcomes for themselves and then left them to it. Personally as a learner I'm not 100% sure I would like something that self guided my self, I'm very Kinaesthetic but I like to know someone is there to make sure things go in the write direction. As a tutor I think this was rather brave and must have taken a lot of planning. Obviously being on a masters course the students would be expected to be able to manage themselves in terms of behaviour and learning but If the technology had failed the session could have been lost. It definitely makes me think about how different a lesson could be though.
See you tomorrow