Everyone loves a shortcut now and then, or maybe all the time, but when we’re talking about the classroom we have to take a step back and take a much longer approach to things. The scenic route might be necessary more often then not, because most classrooms are filled with students at different levels and abilities. The scenic route allows a teacher to recognize flaws in a lesson plan or issues that would not have been as apparent if the pace of the class was moving much faster.
Efficiency is a teacher’s best friend, but it may not be the best for one’s students. It may be slower and more painful, but the rewards at the end of the road will probably be much more for not just you but for your students. Repeating things over and over again might not do the trick. Good ole’ “differentiated instruction” might be the trick. Students will hear, but often struggle to listen or comprehend. Slow it down a couple steps and reinforce the basic building blocks of your lesson so that they can begin to crawl up that concept ladder and then begin to walk at a steady pace.
Some students will sprint and catch every point you allude to, others will pick out random words that don’t even directly apply to your lesson. Let the sprinters go and you can catch up to them shortly, but don’t forget about the walkers, because they may like the scenic route and they might need a hand to guide them along that path.
Take it easy