Knowing the Learners

Based on the reading Implications for Diverse Learners, I think that one of the most important factors in ensuring that you are helping each student to reach his/her highest potential, is to get to know each of your learners. Whenever I enter a classroom, I start off with some form of ice breaker activity. One I used recently was having the students pick as many toilet paper squares as they wanted, and then they had to share a fact about themselves for each square. I also participated in the activity. It took a matter of 10 minutes to complete, but it helped for all of us to feel more comfortable with each other, in my opinion, which made them more open to discussion and questions during the lesson. By getting to know the students, it makes it easier to plan lessons because you will know what will work, and what will not work. It will also make it easier to have lessons that incorporate the needs of the students, and make any adaptations that might be necessary.

One area of diversity that was touched on in this article was sexual orientation. As a future teacher, I want to be able to support my students whenever possible, and to always have an environment where the students feel safe to express who they are. At the school I am currently placed in, everyone wears a guitar pick that is red with a pink equal sign on it. This is done because the students and staff are showing that they support LGBT rights. I would like to have something like this in my classroom, and try to spread it to the rest of the school, as a way of showing that everyone is supported and respected, no matter who they are. You could do this with other areas of diversity as well, which would help to make students  feel welcomed when they enter the school.

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