Sunday, June 12, 2011

Session 3 - Question 2

As an educator, what skill sets do you think need to be included in the curriculum in an effort to facilitate those advanced students considering entering college early? Include page numbers to support your ideas.

21 comments:

  1. Skills that I feel need to be included in a curriculum to help those onsidering entering college early would be (1) How to study and (2) how to take notes. If I put up notes, many students don't copy them because they tell me I will remember it in my head. Many try to copy word for word instead of summarizing in their own words and when i move to the next slide, I get kids saying Wait I am not done!. I also find myself talking about a topic and look up and not one person is writing anything down. Many of them are so used to looking things up on the internet the day before the test to get their study notes. They actually bring me papers they printed and say I found this online, is this what we need to know? Also many of my students can cite definitions word for word but when i give them application questions on the test they tell me, "You did not tell me i had to know this". Somewhere students need a course on how to study..This would not only help them in college but even in high school, if they choose not to enter college early.

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  2. I think that pages 97-99 summarize what educators might be able to do to facilitate early college entry. I think the comment about student’s social skills, “Many have strong social skills and claim to get along very well with their high school classmates. They simply feel starved educationally and need to move on to a much more challenging learning environment.” Educators can’t control a student’s home life or social development outside of the classroom but they can let students know about other options that they do have in their education. We can also show students truly rigorous academic work that they can expect in a new environment. Since many of our students come from homes where there is no college experience for any of the family members, teachers may be the only source of information about college that the students get. I guess it is like teachers would have an individual IEP for student’s but that it will focus on college instead of the academic course work.

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  3. Chapter 9 is a nice roadmap for helping us help students maximize and capitalize on their strengths and work on their weaknesses. As student and educators we know that these habits and skill are imperative to be a successful student and employee. I should not that this would be a great idea to incorporate into our curriculum not only for our early entrant student but for all students at all grade-levels so long as it’s age appropriate. If each grade level put’s their part by the time a student reaches middle school it becomes second nature and in high school we can work to refine and perfect these skills. Something to consider: offering a mandatory course at the middle and high school level on time management, goal setting, note taking, study and testing skills, etc. The university where I attended and later served as an academic counselor offered such a course along with a mandatory 30 minute weekly visit with an assigned academic advisor. This course was initially offered to early entrant college students as a transitional course. It was successful in assisting this student population with the mentioned skills and in helping them with their assumptions and expectations of college course work. This course eventually it was incorporated into the main curriculum and became a mandatory class for all new incoming freshman. The course was met with a lot of resistance by the students at the beginning but by the end of the course based on their reflections they did recognized that it helped them grow and become better students. Even the professors notice positive changes in student behavior, expectations and quality of work.

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  4. This is my response to Session 3 Question 2. Somehow, it got posted on Question 3.
    I think that looking at the To Do List on pages 162-167 is a great way to work backwards from Going Away to College to what a person needs to be ready for college. This list helps a student to be aware of what is needed to experience success in college by making him/her think about all the issues that will arise as part of the college experience. For example, Action #4 on page 163 states that if a student has deficits in terms of study habits, skills, and time management, they should be addressed. Action #5 states that if there is a major gap in knowledge because a student has not been exposed to a particular subject area, then spend some time filling in the gaps on your own. This list of action steps should be introduced and worked on with students as early as middle school and high school so that they start thinking of what is ahead for them, and what they will need to face. Having knowledge of this can help students and their families to plan ahead and formulate good habits early.

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  5. In response to rangelp’s posting of July 9th:

    I wholeheartedly agree with you on the idea of a course that tackles study skills, test preparation and note-taking before going to college. If a student does not go through a very rigorous program in high school, they are in for a rude awakening in college. Experiencing rigor and spending lots of hours studying, note taking, and writing papers and studying for tests in high school is some preparation for college. Coupling this with the student’s self motivation and drive is crucial for success in college. Some students need to be taught how to organize their materials and time, and the course sounds like a great idea.

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  6. I think they should be required to take a home ec or a life skills class - something where they learn to manage money, do laundry, prepare simple meals, set an alarm clock and learn how to manage on their own. I can't tell you how many stories I've heard of college students sleep through their morning classes because they are so accustomed to their mother's waking them up in the morning!

    July 11, 2011 11:18 AM

    Word verifi

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  7. MixKid - in regards to your students telling you that they haven't copied the slide yet and not to move on - have you thought about posting your PowerPoints on a Wiki so that they can access them from the Web anytime? It might promote better discussion and less copying.

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  8. rangelp, does the district offer a time management / study skill class such as you describe? I think it would be very helpful and useful for all SBISD students.

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  9. I defintely agree with Of Life, Education, E-bay, Travel & Books quote about not only do students need to know study skills for college but also how to do simple household tasks (laundry, etc). Many of my g/t students have maids who do everything for them and this would be a rude wake up when they get to college and have no one to pick up after them or do simple everyday tasks.

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  10. I agree with Dr. Marcy’s comments on page 136. Her statements were intuitive to the needs of the early entrants. She states that Simon’s Rock College is prepared to offer the highest liberal arts college education to these gifted students. In addition, they offer residential and co-curricular systems that are designed for the younger students. They recognize that the students’ intellectual development and social and emotional development may occur at different rates. With that consideration, it is important to provide the most challenging academic curriculum yet not forget to aid and support the students with their social and emotional maturing process. It is important to provide a curriculum that does meet the students’ special area of giftedness.

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  11. The curriculum for the advanced students should incorporate the highest level of expectations as one would for the regular college aged students and include class choices that may give them an opportunity to excel in their special academic areas of expertise. It is noted on page 132 that time management programs can be offered to these students. I feel that adapting to the challenging college workload may indeed require the early entrant to re-think their time management and study skills in order to be most successful. Social and cultural activities (page 129) should be a part of their experience in order to help the early entrant branch out and feel comfortable in their college environment.

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  12. I believe that time management and note-taking skills are necessary skill sets for these advanced students. These two skills are impressed upon students starting at an early age, but they become crucial upon reaching college, when students have more freedom, coupled with greater responsibility. Knowing how to divide their time between classes, studying, and extracurricular activities (both scholastic and social) will help them keep their heads above the water. I agree with mixkid's initial comment regarding note taking skills--while my students slavishly race to copy down every word I have written, they zone out on what I am saying while they write. Often, this causes them to miss out on the point I actually want to impress upon them, or the ideas that will help to generate their own thoughts or more complex ideas on the subject. I know that I myself had numerous professors in college who wrote nary a word on the board and I often struggled to figure out what the important information from their lectures was. I wish that my high school teachers had lectured more in this style because it truly is a learned skill that sharpens with practice.

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  13. Victoria GutierrezJuly 12, 2011 at 8:07 PM

    Students have the intelligence to excel, they just lack the "know how" and stamina it takes to see past the right now. Oddly enough, students ofa higher calliber are so intelligent, they don't function well with day to day life. I agree with Mixkid on having a general life skills class. According to director at Clarkson, the highest performing students are well rounded individuals who not only exceed in academics but are capable of setting goals and reaching those goals through time management (112-113).
    Offering a communication/speech class could possibly help the introverted GT students who struggle due to lack of social interaction (118).

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  14. I think that it is extremely important for the kids to learn how to do basic things. Like take notes, know how to determine what is important, how to study and summarize. I know that when we take notes in my class, my students always want to write down every single word. I always tell them that they should write it in their own words, so that it means something to them. They always seem shocked by this concept. I think that they need to learn HOW to learn!

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  15. In response to Of Life, Education, E-bay, Travel & Books:

    #1) I concur with your idea of making it a required course. I’d like to see it at the middle school level (preparing them for H.S) and then as an exit level course at the H.S level (preparing them for college). Definitely agree with MIXKID, a lot of students have maids and it is a rude awakening when they have to do domestic duties on their own. I met a few during my college years and its pretty sad. I would add, in reference to the money management portion of the course, addressing credit cards and how to properly use them. I don’t think the average college student understands that the financial choices made now can affect your future (i.e. credit score, purchasing a home, employment etc…). A lot of my students are first generation students in this country. Sadly, with this population I’ve encountered some parents that don’t even know how to properly fill out a check much less fully understand the credit system and what a FICO score means.

    #2) Nope, don’t know if SBISD offers such a class but it would be nice. Yes, ALL students would benefit from such a course maybe we can petition it, just a thought. I’m game for teaching such a course.

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  16. The Advanced Academy of Georgia has a diverse student body. They don't limit their curriculum to those studying math and science. They also have art, film, English, philosophy, pre-law, and psychology majors (p. 107). This type of curriculum will enrich and strengthen any early entrance program. These students are open to learning a variety of subjects. On p. 137, Simon's Rock College believes students can use their intellecual curiosity and an interest in world affairs to achieve success. On p. 132, the Resident Honors Program on the campus of USC believes "the quality that suggests a student will succeed in RHP is, above all, an overriding drive to learn and broaden his or her horizons... students who approach every opportunity and every challenge with a love of life and a spirit of adventure". These skills will be used to succeed in any early entrance program, as well as needed for any type of challenge at any stage of life.

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  17. I agree with many of the post in that time management is a huge skill when entering college. It's a skill that my 6th graders struggle with. I try to show them how to manage many different activities at the same time, but they fall back to completing one project at a time. Almost like the chef that cooks one plate at a time as the orders pile up.
    The second skill that I think a kid would need, and it's not really discussed in the book, is networking. Really getting to know a large group of people who can make the experience successful. Think about the groups we had while in school.

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  18. The skills that we need to work on in high school are study skills and time management to help them stop procrastinating. Currently at the high school we give them planners to help them plan their activities, but most of the students still wait until the last evening, morning to do their work. They are more than capable of doing it earlier, but there are more "fun" things to do. Once they reach the maturity to use the planner, there is almost a sense of calm with them, and they start asking you about upcoming due dates long in advance so they can plan to get things accomplished. And they are so proud of themselves when they learn this skill. The second skill is study skill and getting them to work on their vocabulary ( and I love the workbook they have to do in their English classes) is hard sometimes. They think they know it all, and when they do not, they do not know how to learn the material. Every year a few join the flash card crowd and they do like reviewing that way. A few made computer flash cards too. These topics are mentioned on page 108.

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  19. Re: Mixkid and laundry
    Years ago Spring Branch had a summer tours program and of the items that we got to do during the 3 week tour was laundry twice. That was one of the biggest learning experiences of the trip. Most had no idea of where to begin. Some parents even sent enough underwear and socks so they could throw things away. When the 48 of us would attack a washateria it was usually the local communities evening entertainment!

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  20. In response to Mixkid July 7 - I couldn't agree more about what skills to teach! Kids don't know how to study or paraphrase. They don't seem to even know what paraphrase means. We are always concerned with "critical thinking", but I think that they need skills to be able to do basic things before they can attempt to think critically.

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  21. I agree with Susand "that time management programs can be offered to these students". Though these students need to be prepared for the college experience, many still need time management programs to help at this time in their education. These programs will ensure success in college and beyond.

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