What Are They Saying?

       No matter what schools I’ve worked at this year, I’ve noticed something that it is place–non-stop student chatter.

      Being at the elementary school level, I don’t expect tomb-like silence from the rows of desks in front of me. But the range of noise level seems to volley between cafeteria-level voice /playground-level (deafening!) Not only they loud, I’ve observed more talking over the teacher’s voice than not.           

           Why all the socialbilty?

          What happened to the sense of knowing where and when to pipe down. It appears that too many kids find school  asmerely social meeting hubs, and just another place to go and hang out with friends, etc.

           Case in point: last week, I was giving instructions for a fifth-grade class with an assignment from the teacher, and few students were listening. I had to shout to be heard, and the noise level continued to rise, like a yeast bread. Moreover, it was not just a few, but  most of them  engaged in their own private dialogues.

       Rather than continue in that way, I decided to concentrate on just six students [out of twenty-five] who wanted to  learn. The rest chose to do something else, as though I was invisible. Unfortunately, this is something seen every day, and the results show on low standardized test scores, and other assessments that determine academic success.

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