We are half way through the year and I have got to know my classes pretty well by now. There are, of course, still mysteries. A brief overview of my current classes:
S1 – A mixed ability group of 25 kids. There are only a couple of highflyers in this class. The majority of the class are level D/E. Six pupils are very low ability (A/B). Got a shock one day when S couldn’t tell me her birthday. The group have a full time learning support teacher which helps enormously. They are also quite creative so generally enjoy English. My concerns with this class are that I am not focusing on the very basic needs of this low level group and that I am not sufficiently challenging the highflyers. One girl loves to write stories and I am not doing enough to support her development.
S2 – The dream class. A streamed class of 26 very capable pupils. They are enthusiastic, motivated and have high expectations of themselves. No real concerns about this class. Perhaps the seating needs to be changed though.
S3 – A streamed class of 14 low ability pupils. Basic writing skills are weak. Motivation is fairly high in the class though I’d like to see them push themselves more. Esp. with homework! Lots of characters in the class. I have a good rapport with the class (achieved after some very hard work and a buffet!). They tend to act up something awful if I’m absent.
S4 – A streamed class of 23 mid to low ability pupils. These kids want to do well but do not want to work hard. Behaviour can be a problem. Especiallly with some rowdy boys. Attendance is also a problem with 5 children. The class are generally good natured and have bouts of working fairly hard.
S5/6 – A class of 18. Half the class are doing Higher. Half are doing Int 2. I have taught neither course before and am struggling to get my head around the gradings. We’ve made very good progress on critical essay writing but haven’t scratched the surface of close reading. Feel like time is running out. The class members range from motivated to frustratingly lazy. Often have to give talk about effort outwith class. Standard Grade has taught them to rely on the teacher too much. Perhaps this is something I should tackle in my SG classes from now on.