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Out of control practicals with year 8

Discussion in 'Science' started by hummi7883, Mar 10, 2012.

  1. hummi7883

    hummi7883 New commenter

    I am a PGCE student in my 2nd placement.
    I am having issues doing practicals with my year 8's.
    Basically it is the management and planning of the practical where I am lacking.I have seen 2 ways of managing practicals so far,like having stations and one that i really like is numbering them.
    I find myself in an awkward position when I let them go and then when I want their attention back there is no way I can do that.A couple of times I shout out freeze everyone and do not move!!I dont want to shout because that is just not my style upto now,but when it comes to practicals I find it hard not to do.
    I am looking for ways,ideas or any strategies that other experienced teachers use to control the class.I have no problems with my year 10's as they know what they are doing,but year 8's AARRGH!!
    Any words of wisdom??
  2. Thejumpingjew

    Thejumpingjew New commenter

    By the sound of it what they need is training. The first few practicals you do now, operate a different system. Talk them through one step at a time. Anyone who does not do what you want, and stop when you need, takes no more part in the practical and does written book work you have previously prepared.

    The moment anyone does not stop and pay attention when you ask, a huge deal needs to be made of it. I would be putting them in detention, and phoning home to parents to discuss health and safety. Possibly a short term practical ban. (I have had huge success with drivers liscence style practical passports.

    As they get uswed to your new system and rules you should see improvement. In terms of shouting all you need is an agreed upon noise to get them to stop. It could be a buzzer on the computer, as long as it can be heard by all. Personally I count back to one from three and by one they should all have stopped working and be silent facing me.

    As with any issue like this, the method is not the major issue it is the consistencey of using rewards and discipline that in the end will help you.

    Hope this helps

  3. Moony

    Moony Lead commenter

    I had a really difficult year 8 group whwn I was on my2nd placement of my PGCE. What I dideach lesson was go in with a plan to do the practical and go with that but the minute they started messing around i'd get them back int their seats and they'ed do the alt book work i'd already planned out. I was effectively planning 2 lessons but my book work bit was just a case of doing X in the book and added on the bottom of my lesson plan clearly marked as a contingency. Practicals are a privaledge and not a right, and you shouldn't be afraid to cancel a practical if you felt you needed to.
  4. AshgarMary

    AshgarMary New commenter

    That sounds like a brilliant idea. Do you have a resource you could share at all?
  5. hummi7883

    hummi7883 New commenter

    The advise seems very tried and tested.....!
    I am going to be more consistent as I observe different teachers and then try to adopt their aproach so consistency is just not there.....


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