little by little

Here’s what I’ve done that’s new and different in my guidance lessons.  I should also mention that these changes are not revolutionary.  Changes I’m trying are tiny steps that others might not notice, but for me they’re significant.

Just like I was able to place myself on Bloom’s Taxonomy Digitally, I could do the same on The SAMR Model.  Placing myself on a chart comforts me.  It is like being validated that you are at least a part of the norm worthy of a chart.

After reading How to Lose All Your Friends by Nancy Carlson, grade 2 kids had to come up with their own friendship rule, and illustrate that.  For the first time, I let the kids choose between drawing on paper or using Kid Pix.   Since we only have five desktops in the classroom, we had to draw sticks for which kids could use the computer.  I also gave them a choice about using the computer or not once their name was picked.

I’d assumed everyone would jump at the opportunity to use the computer, but my assumption proved wrong.  Some kids didn’t chose Kid Pix , and I don’t know why.  Preference?  Not feeling comfortable enough to use the computer or the program?  Do I even need to know the reasons kids choose one medium over the other?

This time I let go of the notion that it’s inequitable for only 5 kids to be able to use the computer.  They were totally fine with it.  Nobody said  “it’s not fair!”   I also didn’t come up with all kinds of excuses that things wouldn’t work.  Perhaps I trusted the kids more in that class.

The simple act of giving kids a small choice made everyone more engaged in their learning.  Without being told to do so, kids were helping and talking with each other about their work.  I didn’t have to make anyone do the activity.

This is still doing old things new way, “substitution” stage on The SAMR Model, but I am moving forward little by little.


About Naho Kikuchi

Elementary school counselor at The American School in Japan. Living and working in West Tokyo since 1997. Forever trying to figure out how to balance work, family and time for myself.
This entry was posted in COETAIL, Guidance Lessons. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to little by little

  1. Adam says:

    Hello Naho,

    I love how you said, “It is like being validated that you are at least a part of the norm worthy of a chart.” This brought a smile to my face as I imagined feeling good just by falling into a norm of some form. I also appreciated your emphasis on small steps that may appear insignificant to others but are meaningful for you. As it turned out your small step year very interesting for me as well. I can imagine my little girl in kindergarten not wanting to use the computer because she’s so skillful with colored pencils and loves to draw. Maybe Fulgrum’s “all I need to know I learned in kindergarten” rings true for technology as well. Maybe we need to keep in mind that sometimes the simplest most basic solution is the best solution for the task. Thanks for this enjoyable post.

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