In an effort to benefit their students, two teachers teaming up in classroom instruction are finding that teamwork is an effective strategy to bring out the best.
There are 39 students in the Early Learning Center classroom where Julie Miller and Liza Simmons teach. During some reading times and for math, combined classes meet in the same room for work at the second graders seats. The second classroom is a reading center, where students are divided into groups.
“Even though you have twice the students, they have two helpers,” Miller said.
The children like the arrangement.
Second-grader Zoe Fagan likes the team teaching approach.
“It was like it was in pre-kindergarten,” said second grader Zoe Fagan. “I like this better, because even though some of your friends aren’t in the same class as you, they’re now in the same class,” she said.
Both teachers help each other and share duties. One teaches from the digital SMART board while the other checks student progress at their desks. During reading class, they have an aide who helps.
“We always pitch in and help each other,” said Simmons. “She helps her students and my students. We don’t really differentiate. It’s whoever needs the help right there. Let’s say she was involved in helping a student and she had another student who was causing a problem or needing attention of a different kind, then I would go and do that.”