Tuesday, September 06, 2005

VELS pd activity for teachers with ADHD

The Fraud is at a meeting to discuss curriculum matters and the new Essential Learning Standards and how they will be implemented. Also present are department heads, level coordinators, the principal. It’s been a long day. It’s a long way from over. Around the long table eyes glaze over as more downloaded photocopies, in plastic envelopes this time, to give them increased importance, it seems, are distributed. The Fraud and her colleagues dutifully take them and put them in folders. And then we’re into an activity, the purpose is apparently to validate our current teaching practices; to model an activity which we’re to present to our own faculties. Write about a time when you really thought that you were teaching effectively. What were you doing? Why did it work? How many examples do you want? the Fraud asks. She scribbles down the required three examples. Next, we cut out our work. Our leader pastes our efforts onto coloured prism board. The Fraud is again amazed at how much pleasure some people gain from this cutting and pasting process. Kinaesthetic learners? The colourful display of our efforts is posted on the wall. Now we are given coloured sticky dots. We all must take four. We’re to stick our dots against the lessons with which we most identify; the best lessons. At this stage, Fraud has hit the four-thirty wall. It’s an age thing. Do I have to actually get up? she asks. Yes, says the leader. Fraud collects her dots and stands at the back of the group of her colleagues who are dutifully leaning in to read about others’ lessons. The LOTE teacher hits a few points with his Principles of Learning and Teaching knowledge. Gets a few dots. Fraud doesn’t get any. She’d like to think it’s down to her handwriting. The meeting concludes an hour and three quarters after it began. The Fraud ponders the purpose of the activity, which worked for some, on the way home. It failed to augment her understanding of VELS. Similar ‘hands-on’ activities have worked well in the past for the Fraud when she’s been teaching twenty-five year eight students, thirteen of whom have ‘diagnosed’ ADHD. Well, it worked for about ten minutes until the students worked out how much fun could be had by snipping the tops off the Blu-stiks and firing them at the ceiling, where they stuck. Some of them are still up there four years later.

1 comment:

Jo McLeay said...

I remember doing something just like that at my school. Do you think its a virus?