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Use of TAs in Morning session - advice

Discussion in 'Primary' started by star17, Nov 20, 2011.

  1. Hello. Sorry have posted a few requests for help recently but would really appreciated some advice on this: I am in the fortunate position of having 2 TAs now in my class for Maths and I want to make sure I use them in the most effective way (am in Year 2 btw). As in most classes I have a wide range of ability. I am considering having the following:
    1) During starter (1 group working with TA responding to my written comments from marking their previous work), 1 group with TA doing an activity at their level and other 3 groups with me.
    2) During main - each adult working with a group and 2 groups independent.
    3) During plenary - have 3 different plenaries (LA/MA/HA with an adult for each).
    Benefits - children getting a more personalised approach - more progress.. TAs taking a more active rather than passive role. Disadvantages - TAs will have to be more organised as may be working with different groups during lesson (one TA is very good, one is not very so that could be an issue). Involves more resourcing on my front and more to get my head around. Other disadvantage - may be hard for each group to concentrate if all groups going on at same time.
    What are your opinions? Does anybody have a similar system or do you think I'm being too ambitious and won't work having so many groups.
  2. It sounds fab but also very complex!
    I would ask your TAs what they think is the best way to get the most from having them. This way what they are doing is not just top-down teacher's instructions, and you are drawing them in to take responsibility for what they are doing. What I do know is that TAs vary enormously: some won't do ANYTHING unless the teacher has directly instructed them to do so and others will use initiative and do something without having been asked. Some are really keen to be involved in the planning and feedback process and others (perfectly understandably) say this is not their job but the teacher's, and only want to turn up, follow instructions and leave. This is why I say to sit down and speak to them about how they think they can best be used. If it were me, I'd say (for example) tomorrow that I'd like to sit down and have a chat about this and ask if you can make 10mins one day later in the week. This way you don't catch them off-guard and they have time to reflect and think about what they think the best way to proceed is.
    (You are so lucky to have two TAs! I have zero TAs!) Best of luck with it xx
  3. Thanks yes I think that is a good way of going about things. One is much more able to and enjoys taking initiative whereas the other is not so it may be that they have quite different opinions. I have one boy with very challenging behaviour and it might be better for his group to have one consistent adult throughout the lesson so have a few things to think about.

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