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Question about where you teach
Old 08-02-2006, 05:12 AM
 
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I have noticed that many people have posted that they do not teach with the children sitting at their desks; rather they have them sit on a rug or floor.

My question is: what grades do you do this in and what grades do you think it is appropriate for?

I am asking because I think it would be a great way to teach by I don't think any of the teachers in my building (3-5) teach this way. I am wondering if it is appropriate for grade 4 or only the primary grades.


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Where I teach
Old 08-02-2006, 05:33 AM
 
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I have a dry erase board on an easle in the back of my room. I call this area "The carpet". I do all lessons there. I like it because there are not distractions from things at the tables. Then the students are dismissed in a fun way (tip toe, baby step, side step to your seat) to go to their seat.

I teach 3rd grade.
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Every grade
Old 08-02-2006, 06:08 AM
 
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I've taught this way for every grade I've taught (1-3). I'd probably use it in 4th and 5th as well. I like that they have nothing to play with and that I can direct their attention easier. If you try if with 4th graders, you may wish to do it a little at a time so they get used to it.
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Carpet
Old 08-02-2006, 06:10 AM
 
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I purchased a large carpet for my third grade room. I want to teach most lessons with the students on the carpet, but I am not sure if I am going to put it in front of the large white board in the front of the room or if I am going to make a "carpet area" as described above. I think that by having them on the carpet, I am able to see who is paying attention and "getting it" much better than if they are at thier seats.
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rug area
Old 08-02-2006, 06:36 AM
 
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A lot depends on your classroom set-up (is there a good space for a rug area). With older grades you can still use a rug area but it is a bit more difficult because they are bigger and take up more room. And for some children it is distracting to be on a rug.

I used the rug a lot in grade 1. Now in grade 3 I don't even have a rug but for some lessons I will gather the students on the floor in an area because I need them to look at a book, pictures, items, etc., They are fine with this. I would use a rug if I could but my room is not large enough now because I have more students and larger ones at that.

I think you could easily use a rug and teaching corner in any grade up to grade 6 for sure. But I wouldn't use it for all lessons.


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rug time in upper grade
Old 08-02-2006, 06:41 AM
 
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I bring 4th and 5th graders to "the rug" (any open area in the room) for several things ... sometimes a lesson; when we are brainstorming a list of something; to share a special book; an important / serious discussion; just for a change of pace / routine. I call it "up close and personal". My classes have always liked the change - they say it reminds them of when they were "kids" I jokingly tell them they still ARE "kids" ... they mean when they were in primary. It does keep them more focused when they are not near their desks / backpacks but I don't do it for everything...
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3rd grade
Old 08-02-2006, 08:31 AM
 
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I only have them sit on the floor if I am reading a book aloud. They squirm too much if they are not in their desks. Maybe if I did it more often it would get better. I also get the I can't see and everything else.
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Different Places for Different Purposes
Old 08-02-2006, 08:55 AM
 
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I have 4th/5th graders, and we sit on the floor for read aloud and large group discussions such as during a sharing session at the end of reader's and writer's workshop. Gathering together on the floor just seems more personal for sharing and discussiong than sitting around the room in chairs. My problem is that I never have enough room for everyone to sit comfortably on the floor without scrunching in (which I hate ), but every year I keep on trying to make a better space for gathering students together on the floor. For the most part, all other instruction takes place at students' tables. We do lots of hands-on activities that work best at tables.
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I agree with bzetchr
Old 08-02-2006, 11:09 AM
 
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I use my time on the carpet (we say reading corner cause that's where the gathering point is) as a real intense focused time that we pay attention really well. I have a lot of special needs kiddos and the short focused time with the change from being in their chairs helps us pay attention!

We do picture book mini lessons in the reading corner, read aloud after recess some times (again, they say it reminds them of when they were little!!!) And we have serious discussions here and brainstorm solutions.

I taught fourth last year and I'm looping up with them to fifth! I am one of the few (if not only) upper grade teacher that does things this way and my kids and I love it.

Hah, one more thing... One serious discussion NOT to have in the reading corner (cozy and close) is the "we need to wash ourselves daily, wear clean clothes and talk to our parents about deoderant talk." In this situation, cozy and close is a BAD idea. We have that serious talk from our seats! *smile*
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rug
Old 08-02-2006, 01:35 PM
 
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I teach almost exclusively on the carpet (first grade) BUT I learned this from where I student taught in Kindergarten and Fourth grade, and in that district, children are at the carpet for all "learning" times K-5. It's not required or anything, it's just that in that district, that's what works for them. When I student taught 4th grade, I like the intimacy of teaching and reading novels on the carpet. I also felt like in math, kids were better at talking their way through a problem on the carpet. Logistically, they were more able to turn their heads towards each other, respond, make eye contact, etc...


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