Teachers from Collège Sainte-Anne share their winning strategies to support their so-called “weak third” students, without lowering their expectations of others. Today, we are discovering a strategy based on students' self-assessment.
During a professional development activity held in the fall of 2015 at Collège Sainte-Anne, teachers were asked to think about their less traditional ways of supporting their students, then to try to communicate them to their colleagues of all subjects having expressed interest.
One of these strategies is to let students, in some cases, choose the difficulty of the task at hand. Formerly a French teacher at Collège Sainte-Anne, Caroline Hétu is well known for having codified this practice of differentiation in his blog. Like her, Rudder Davila, a Spanish teacher at the College, allows students to decide on the level of competence they recognize themselves, and the degree of difficulty of the task they intend to succeed. Will they be beginners or “almost Latino”?
The principles of the strategy :
- Challenge the students.
- Offer different tasks and problems with varying levels of difficulty.
- The student self-assesses and can repeat the same level more than once.
Added value for the weak third :
- These students have the opportunity to develop their skills from the ground up.
- The error is more educational than penalizing.
- The humor in the name of the levels is also a source of perseverance.
Tools and resources to do this :
- Annotated images ThingLink.
- Badges Credly