Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Habits of Learners: A Little Experience With Metacognition

One of my students got sent to se the principal...but that was a good thing!

Every day we learn four new words. We talk about the sounds, we learn why words are spelled the way they are. And we do a spelling test. One of my students struggles with this. Every day he has more corrections than I hoped he would. All year I have watched him and tried to figure out why this is so challenging, I am slowly figuring a few things out and encouraging him to do a few things that seem to be helping. Recently he had tests where three days in a row he got 100%. I was so thrilled! I told him how proud I was of him. I told him how the things he had been doing are paying off. And, last of all, I said, "We have to tell the principal about this!"

We photocopied his tests and he wrote up a little blurb about his great news. He wrote that he was being recognized because ge got 100%. I clarified with him that this accomplishment was because he had done something special to make this happen. He went back to his desk and added that this was caused by being picked as the star student.

Apparently, he thought being picked as the star student that week was the difference! It brought him good luck. That wasn't what I wanted him to gather from this accomplishment. What happens when he isn't Star Student next week?

I dove into explaining that this wasn't luck. He accomplished this because he is becoming great at spelling!! 

...so he added another bit: ...and Mrs. Ackroyd knew I could do it.


Next step: get this kid to really internalize that he is great!! It's not luck. It's not me. He is great!! He just doesn't quite know it yet. I guess until then I will keep letting him know I believe in him.

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