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Dear Theo - Unresponsive Class

Discussion in 'Jobseekers' started by abl21, Nov 29, 2011.

  1. Dear Theo,
    I went for an interview today and the interview lesson was with a Year 11 class who simply did not seem prepared to be interested in the topic or to make any real attempt to engage with the tasks. I think I am an averagely creative person, and started the lesson with positive energy (though I am not a super-bouncy, energetic type) but it just felt like a struggle. Have you any advice for generating interest in a class in this situation, when, of course, you don't know them. I know I need to develop a rapport, but ... how?
    Please advise,
    Thankyou, ABL
     
  2. Dear Theo,
    I went for an interview today and the interview lesson was with a Year 11 class who simply did not seem prepared to be interested in the topic or to make any real attempt to engage with the tasks. I think I am an averagely creative person, and started the lesson with positive energy (though I am not a super-bouncy, energetic type) but it just felt like a struggle. Have you any advice for generating interest in a class in this situation, when, of course, you don't know them. I know I need to develop a rapport, but ... how?
    Please advise,
    Thankyou, ABL
     
  3. Georgia99

    Georgia99 New commenter

    For my last interview I taught a Yr 11 class who were completely unresponsive and it was a nightmare for the 25 minutes I was required to teach them.
    I gave them all name cards to write their names and directed questions at specific students to encourage them to answer. I tried to use a little humour and be enthusiastic but it was difficult to get much out of them.
    To be honest I felt I had not done well but I got the job and now work with them and they are still like it now! The hod told me they are like it with all teachers and while I am making some progress after 5 weeks, they are still very unmotivated and reluctant to learn.
    It may just be that they were a difficult group so don't beat yourself up :)
     
  4. Maybe it was their 5th interview lesson of the day, on the same subject. I feel so sorry for the kids during these interview lessons, if I had to sit through 5 lessons on exactly the same objective (and potentially the same activities - candidates don't know what others are teaching!!) I would be unresponsive! Not your fault of course OP! Just have to do the best we can.
     
  5. This has happened to me twice recently, one with a year 11 class and one with a year 4 group. The former were a mixed ability class in a Special school and I prepared some great worksheets for them - being longlisted I wanted to focus on the teaching and learning and in the end they all learnt and I did well. The TA told me afterwards that they do not usually do that much work for their usual teachers but they did for me. The observing lady just said my times up and helped collect the sheets afterwards and more or less told me to *** off. The place was run by women. No call back, no nothing.
    The year 4 class I prepared so much for, cutting out, planning, then planning some more. This time the kids sat down and turned into statues even before I started my 20 minute lesson. Enough said.
     
  6. anon8315

    anon8315 Established commenter

    It is awful when this happens. Whiteboards(mini ones!) are a good way of getting the whole class involved. I also use coloured cards a lot as students can feed back their understanding without speaking. Younger children like smiley neutral and sad faces. Also, could you laminate some 'don't ask me' cards? (pm me and I can send some) - they just take the pressure off! x
     
  7. Thanks for those ideas, Badger Girl, and to everyone else who shared your experiences. It's difficult to judge whether an unresponsive class is shy, bored or just bemused, but I will persevere, and hope it goes better next time. [​IMG]
     
  8. Thanks!
     
  9. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

    Sometimes you manage it, and sometimes you don't. Happens to us all.
    I find a simple trick like getting the kids holding up a green, yellow or red pencil, to show how much they've understood, can sometimes help.
    If they happen to have colouring pencils, of course!
    Getting them fast into groups of 2 or 3 and then getting the group's answer can sometimes work better than asking individuals - they feel less diffident if they don't hold personal responsibility for the answer that they give.
    Best wishes
    ___________________________________________
    TheoGriff. Member of the TES Careers Advice Service.
    I do Application and Interview one-to-ones, and also contribute to the Job Application Seminars. We look at application letters, executive summaries and interviews, with practical exercises that people really appreciate.
    www.tes.co.uk/careerseminars
     

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