Monday, September 17, 2012

Differentiating Responsive Classroom- Logical Consequences

After years teaching a general education classroom I have forgotten how to teach without using logical consequences. Because they are exactly what they say they are- logical- they are so easily naturally embedded into the classroom that I find it's easier to use them than not use them.

Last week I tackled teaching the beginnings of logical consequences- 'You break it, you fix it', or as I like to call it, "Be a problem solver".

In the general education classroom I'd have children brainstorm the possible scenarios that might fall into a 'you break it, you fix it' category. Knocking over crayons, ripping a friend's paper, spilling water on the floor. Then I'd have the children each draw a pictures on index cards- one picture for the problem and one for the solution.

This year, because drawing isn't one of the things we enjoy as much as some children- I found it was more meaningful for me to act out the problems. I physically dropped the crayons on the floor and then asked the class how I should fix it. I'd choose someone to come model for us what we should do. I took pictures of the problem and the solution so we'd have a visual reminder of how we fixed the problem.

We tackled the same issues that we'd tackle in the gen ed room- trash on the floor, bumping into a friend, spilling juice- we just used interactive modeling and the digital camera instead of asking the class to draw it.


Then I gave our whole class a hands-on task. All of our linking cubes were "broken". When we'd gotten them they were in sticks of ten but now they are all separated. We'd better fix it! I gave each child a set of cubes and asked them to fix them with us. We'd broken them together the week before, so now we need to fix it.

It was a meaningless task- I have no intention of actually keeping my linking cubes in ten sticks, but it gave us all a chance to practice "you break it, you fix it". It also helped solidify the lesson into our memory. We all repeated the phrase while we worked on fixing our problem and we celebrated when we'd finished fixing our problem.

The next day when I brought out the poster to make review what we'd done the day before the whole class immediately cheered, "You break it, you fix it! Be a problem solver!"

Just like I would in the general education class I am continuing to watch them closely and label when I catch them fixing a problem. When I see someone picking up crayons I refer back to our poster and talk about how this is all a part of our rock star plan.

1 comment:

Alex Valencic said...

No task is meaningless when it includes such important social emotional learning skills like practicing "you break it, you fix it" and solidifying the lesson into the students' individual and collective memory :)

A think tank focused on creative solutions for future problem solvers -tree