Over the past five weeks, I’ve spent my time with Class 4. They are an energetic bunch of 8 and 9 year olds who love to be taken out of class to do one-on-one reading. When they see that I am taking a classmate out to read, they whisper to me “Me, Madam!” I have to remind them that their turn will come soon. The one-on-one reading program provides time for students to work at their individual skill level, and get extra support, if needed.
In addition to one-on-one time, I have also been helping by teaching music, physical education, and arts and crafts each week. The students get very excited about all of these subjects. This week, for arts and crafts, the students made mobiles. I split them into three groups and asked them to pick a theme. It took some time for them to agree on (and stick to) an idea. Group 1 chose food, group 2 picked Fiji, and group 3 settled on sharks. I prepared sticks to use as hangers, but the students had to make their own string using coconut leaves. They used markers and coloured pencils to draw their hanging symbols. Group 3 (all boys) worked very diligently on drawing their sharks. They even went looking through library books for pictures of sea creatures. Class 4 has some pretty good artists and most of the students were so engrossed in their projects that they worked straight through their morning recess. Group 1 finished first and proudly hung their well-balanced mobile in the classroom.
As far as choosing an activity for P.E., I had heard from other volunteers that the students really like to play netball and rugby. This past week, I suggested that we play netball. Netball isn’t big where I am from, so I told the students that they had to teach me how to play, which they did really well. I think the best part was having them play boys against girls because they get especially competitive. I definitely need more practise, though.
In music class, I drew pictures of instruments on cards and distributed them throughout the class. Using my ipod and speakers, I played music for them. They had to hold up their card when they heard their instrument in the song. Then we talked about what types of instruments they had and if it produced a soft or loud sound. They did fairly well overall. We ended with Train’s “Soul Sister” song, and the students immediately started singing along.