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Niranjan Meegammana
Project Director/AYV Lead Educator

What are your best practices to help weak students

One of the problems I have is widening knowledge gap in class as training goes on. I have the challenge of keeping the momentum of the fast learners without slowing down and increase the knowledge and skills of the less fast learners.

Will extra time allocation help?
Will reduction of workload help?
Will remixing the class help?

Please help with your experiences ?

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Herbert Weigelt

Posted on 1/4/16 6:41:10 PM Permalink

Granted the opportunity, you may want to investigate the individual interests of the those who are falling behind and provide them with tasks that support their interests in one form or another. (its like giving them a practice orientated example of what they like doing).

Something else that seems to work is to periodically pair up the "most with the least" and have them learn from one another.

Most important I believe is that no one is allowed to fail in that if one does... The instructor will carry some of the blame in one form or another.

Donna Dolan

Posted on 10/1/15 1:37:56 AM Permalink

I think this is where I go with acceptance of the creativity factor. Often I ask "more" out of the faster students. Speed in completing a task or project does not always produce quality work. I ask the faster students to take a hard look at the finished product. I suggest they continue designing, change a color background, try another font, add an effect, etc. Layers are a wonderful way to test out those items.

Faster students can be a big help as a tutor or sounding board for a slower student. Collaboration plays such an important part in the creative process.

If trying to find out if a student can demonstrate proficiency of a skill, what better way than to challenge the "fast" student to apply that skill with an additional project as Anthony and Debra have stated. It doesn't hurt to have some graphic design books or magazines around for inspiration or to point them to a site with tutorials for more projects.

Anthony Hays

Posted on 9/1/15 5:18:48 PM Permalink

Just as Debra stated, I created additional lessons for those students who finish early and are just advanced in the class. Usually my bonus lessons can be really advanced but keeps those students engaged.

Debra Laraway

Posted on 8/21/15 1:23:09 AM Permalink

I teach college prep math to adults, but you could adapt these to something else. One of the things I'll do is when I give students problems to work on in class, sometimes I give them more than most students can do, or I'll have some extra "challenge" problems. I tell them I don't expect everyone to get them all done, or that some are challenges for after/if they get the others done. Also have sets of videos for each topic they can watch outside of class that are optional. That option leaves it up to slower students to take some initiative, but teaching adults I can reasonably expect that. Have also had students work in pairs, making it clear that both students have to understand how to do the problems. That means the faster ones have the extra challenge of explaining why they do what they do to someone else, which helps them while helping a slower student. With pairs, both students are always expected to have separate work paper to avoid one student doing the work and the other just watches. Once in a while I'll have problem sets for students to do at the end of class. When they finish, they can leave. Wouldn't work for K-12, but adults are OK with it, and the slower ones are happy to have a bit more individual help the last 15 minutes or so of class without the speedy people hearing their questions.