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Balance of adult-led and child initiated

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by LizzieTish, Dec 8, 2011.

  1. LizzieTish

    LizzieTish New commenter

    How are people managing to do this in Reception classes? Basically, we don't have direct access to outdoors so I'm thinking of splitting my class in half (roughly grouped by ability) so half can work indoors with an adult for 30 minutes, and the other half outdoors with another adult, each morning, then swap. This would then be repeated in the afternoon. Depending on what the intended outcomes are, I think perhaps one of us could be leading directed learning, and the other making observations and supporting children's self-initiated play, either indoors or outdoors. However, I won't get to work with every child in an hour, and don't necessarily want the same directed activity to continue all day. If we are to achieve a balance of AD and CI each day, would it be too prescriptive to have AD activities in the mornings (both indoors and outdoors) and CI in the afternoons? We can't change our provision for the afternoons as we share the space with part-time FS1. Also, unfortunately, I'm sorry to say my TA is not a confident person, and nor do I have utmost confidence in her ability to challenge and extend the children. I don't want to end up always asking her to support CI learning though! Argh! Our Profile data shows that SSM, W, PD (fine motor) and ED are our lowest scoring areas, so I feel I should be doing the majority of 'teaching' in these areas. Any ideas and feedback welcome, please!
     
  2. LizzieTish

    LizzieTish New commenter

    How are people managing to do this in Reception classes? Basically, we don't have direct access to outdoors so I'm thinking of splitting my class in half (roughly grouped by ability) so half can work indoors with an adult for 30 minutes, and the other half outdoors with another adult, each morning, then swap. This would then be repeated in the afternoon. Depending on what the intended outcomes are, I think perhaps one of us could be leading directed learning, and the other making observations and supporting children's self-initiated play, either indoors or outdoors. However, I won't get to work with every child in an hour, and don't necessarily want the same directed activity to continue all day. If we are to achieve a balance of AD and CI each day, would it be too prescriptive to have AD activities in the mornings (both indoors and outdoors) and CI in the afternoons? We can't change our provision for the afternoons as we share the space with part-time FS1. Also, unfortunately, I'm sorry to say my TA is not a confident person, and nor do I have utmost confidence in her ability to challenge and extend the children. I don't want to end up always asking her to support CI learning though! Argh! Our Profile data shows that SSM, W, PD (fine motor) and ED are our lowest scoring areas, so I feel I should be doing the majority of 'teaching' in these areas. Any ideas and feedback welcome, please!
     
  3. It's not an ideal situation because the children will not have much choice as to whether they are outside or inside, or the opportunity to move from outside to inside and vice versa, but I guess we all have to deal with the limitations of our provision! I think what really matters is that children's play is well-supported and not sidelined. If your TA is not confident I would be very wary of making her the CI person, as I think it takes more expertise to support CI play than to direct a focus activity. At least with a focus activity you can write a prescriptive plan for her to follow to give her confidence. But some focus activities will be more challenging to deliver than others, so apportion them with an awareness of your TA's strengths and weaknesses. I feel very sad that you have felt the need to put 'teaching' in inverted commas. I always feel I am doing my best teaching when engaging with children in their CI activities, although it does tend to be 'off the cuff' (and therefore, occasionally, inspired). And the adult-directed activities can involve more planned teaching opportunities. Both involve real teaching, not 'teaching'! From the areas of development you see as priorities I would say that you could teach all of them both through small group focused activities and through CI play, but ED, in particular, will be best taught and observed during CI activities.
     
  4. LizzieTish

    LizzieTish New commenter

    Thankyou for your response, but I was particularly interested in hearing about how people would suggest managing the logistics, given the details I had provided.
     
  5. As regards the logistics what I am saying is that you need to share the CI and AD between yourself and your assistant; that you need to think of ways of teaching your priority areas through CI as well as through AD activities and that you need to share out tasks with a view to your TA's strengths and weaknesses. As for which children go where at which time it seems it will be necessary to split the class so it is just a question of how you split them and who goes with which group, I would say that depends on who wants go outside and who wants to stay in. You will just need to keep a tick list to check who has done the AD activity and check everyone gets an opportunity. The question of when and where you do your AD activity and when and where you do your CI is fairly academic and depends on the activity and why and how you want to do it.
     

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