Self-Evaluation in the Global Classroom

By John MacBeath; Hidenori Sugimine | Go to book overview

17

No two the same

How students react differently to the same lessons

Jeremy Barnett and Matthew Greenhalgh

The same class, the same teacher, but a different response from two students who sit beside each other and are good friends. These three examples from Japan and Sweden illustrate a more general truth about learning and teaching. These examples raise the question of how aware teachers can be of what is going on in young people's minds as they sit, head down taking notes, or apparently listening and how teachers accommodate to the very different expectations that young people have of their teachers, classmates and the pace of teaching.

The first example, from Japan, follows Takayo and Kaori of 5B, while the second example follows another pair of students from 5C. The third example, from Sweden, follows Fredrik and Elin, boy and girl, again living out separate and distinct lives in the same school and classroom.


Takayo and Kaori

During my first shadowing in Japan I spent two days with class 5B and observed the same teaching approach that was predominant for the majority of the time. The response to this from students was different in the case of the two students, Takayo and Kaori, whom I was shadowing.

At the beginning of every lesson the class would take quite a long time to settle down. I noticed that it was only a small group of students who caused the unsettling atmosphere. On a number of occasions this would last for the majority of the lesson and would result in the teacher having to stop the lesson to speak to the disruptive students. Sometimes the teacher would direct a random question to one of the boys, which would stop the socialising for a little while. When the teacher selected the students to answer questions, many of them didn't seem too confident. During my shadowing in Japan I was told by some students that they do not feel confident expressing their views in front of their classmates as they are worried about making mistakes. This may be a very important cultural factor contributing to our understanding of what is going on in this classroom.

Takayo's response to this style of teaching was similar to that of the majority of students in the class. She was well focused and concentrated for the duration

-175-

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Self-Evaluation in the Global Classroom
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • List of Figures ix
  • List of Tables xi
  • Introduction 1
  • Part I - The Learning School 3
  • 1 - The Story Begins 5
  • 2 - What We Did 15
  • 3 - Tools for Schools 27
  • 4 - A Lifetime of Learning (In One Year) 36
  • 5 - The Impact on the Schools 50
  • 6 - Expert Witnesses 65
  • Part II - Insights into the School Experience from the Learning School Students 73
  • 7 - A Place Called School 75
  • 8 - The School Day 84
  • 9 - Layouts for Learning 92
  • 10 - Subjects, Subjects, Subjects 98
  • 11 - Lessons, Lessons, Lessons 110
  • 12 - Who Do You Learn Most From? 117
  • 13 - Who Likes School? 125
  • 14 - Two Classes Compared 137
  • 15 - It All Depends on Your Point of View 149
  • 16 - A Life in the Day of Three Students 161
  • 17 - No Two the Same 175
  • 18 - Talking About Learning 183
  • 19 - Learning Out of School 203
  • 20 - Students and Their Parents 209
  • 21 - Lifelong Learning 219
  • 22 - Postscript 229
  • Bibliography 233
  • Index 235
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