Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Study Skills

Are you teaching study skills to your middle schoolers? If so, what are you using for curriculum and how are you doing it?

My residency teacher and I have started teaching note taking skills this week.  I've not had my students taking notes in the first semester. I jumped right in to interactive notebooks and have not really done any lecture where they needed to "take" notes. But my residency teacher is more comfortable with the lecture method and we are working to get him more comfortable with the interactive notebooks.

As he has done a few lecture based lessons, we realized that only around 25% of our students take effective notes. This week, we've started teaching the outline method as they read their text. We've been very engaging and enthusiastic in our modeling of reading and outlining the text. Our students are doing well with summarization. They were amazed at how much information they knew when we did a quick review sheet over the information we'd read.

Now I am realistic and I know that not many will continue to use this method. High schoolers can be apathetic when it comes to studying. :) We (the teachers) discussed with each class how much we used note taking and outline skills in college and I was amazed at how many questions they had about our personal study methods. So I know they were engaged and interested.

I'm not really sure where I need to go next. I've been trying to find more information but nothing seems really practical. If anyone has suggestions, please let me know!