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Chapter 5 Leader: Alyssia Harper Support Staff: Nikolette Edge, Beth Franks, Stephanie Garcia, and Jason Henderson

Nikolette Edge P. 86 Teaching middle school gives you a first-hand look at the under-developed frontal lobe. As adults we wonder why on Earth they thought doing something was a good idea because we see the connection between the action and the outcome. P. 89 I wonder if there are negative effects from the "vagueness" of the roles for adolescents that are due to the vast number of cultures and family structures in our society. P. 90 Children's language development is linked to the number of words spoken to them from the adults in their life, particularly the mother. NPR had a report that a child of three living in poverty has heard 30 million less words than a child living in an upper-income home. They are trying to educate mothers about the importance of conversation with their young children. P. 102 As a teacher, there are many times I find a student that needs direct instruction on social behaviors, but I often do not know how to go about it. It can be very awkward to try to explain social behaviors without making the child feel like there is something wrong with them. P. 102 I must remember that children displaying both positive and negative "aspects of humanity" are not broken or wrong, just learning. I need to react to them as individuals in the process of growing. Beth Franks P. 84 When students take the AR placement tests each year, they are assigned a ZPD. Students use this zone to find books that are the appropriate reading level for them. Like Vygotskys theory, the test measures the actual reading level and then gives a potential range of reading levels. The book describes it as the edge of the childs independent knowledge where she is ready to take the next step in further learning. This translates to the reading levels as well. Students can use the reading knowledge they have and then stretch it to a higher level.

P. 98-99 The narrative Welcome to Holland really resonated with me. I had never thought of raising a special needs child in that way, but it was spot on. The dream of Italy is changed to Holland. Holland isnt bad, but its different. You learn to adapt. But there is always the dream that will never come true. There is a significant amount of grief attached to children with special needs. Its not that I dont appreciate the wonderful things about my daughter, and its not like I mourn constantly. But it creeps up every now and then. As teachers, we need to be very mindful that the parents of special needs students are in this same boat. P. 100 I like the graph example of Figure 5.3. It helps keep each students progress in perspective. Children learn differently. I was especially interested in Zoes progress. She did make gains but in an unorthodox manner. She would learn a skill and then the next week, forget it. I have encountered this before. Its frustrating, but now I see that as long as gains are being made, its alright. There is no one right way and no one right time to arrive. Stephanie Garcia P. 85 "Genetics, nutrition, responsiveness of caregivers, daily experiences, physical activity, and love all play a part in a growing and developing brain." (Arndt & Rapp, 2012) This is something we as teachers need to think of daily. There are many factors that go into a student's daily life. Especially working with middle schoolers where attitude and behavior is minute-by-minute, I have to realize that any of an infinite number of factors could be effecting their actions. Plus we also need to keep in mind these factors to help mold their brains into something good (positive attitudes, high self-esteem, etc.) P. 97 Middle schoolers are the biggest socialites. Every spare moment they get, they want to socialize. As a middle school teacher, I have to set the example on what positive social skills are. I have to make sure that I set the tone on how to interact socially. One humiliating situation could be detrimental to a student and his/her social development, and vice-versa. And if there is a negative social interaction, it could shut down a student completely to wanting to learn or interact any more. So we (I, personally) need to make sure I'm setting the correct tone in my classes on social behavior. P. 100 "As teachers, our job is not to change or fix the way students are, but to support their individual paths." (Arndt & Rapp, 2012) This sentence rocked me to the core. It's so hard (especially with 50-120 students) to look at each student as an individual on his/her own individual learning path when I have the same standards to teach to all students. But it is the most important factor that we need to always keep in mind. Each student can get to the destination they need to be at, but they will each have their own ways of going about it. Our job is to take the time and patience to help those students figure out how to accomplish and succeed in reaching the goals we set for them.

Alyssia Harper P. 85-86 I loved reviewing all of the different theorist! I'm a nerd like that though! As I was reading I was thinking about memorizing all of those fact charts and how it relates to me now. My experience is that some of us get so focused on reading standards and flying through material that we sometimes forget that these are people that are also developing. P. 90 Talking about language development and I get to the last part and it talked about adolescents needing to express themselves. They also hit the nail on the head when they say that it can be frustrating. For me it's hard to remember that when they are arguing with you and seem to be trying to hit all of your buttons. P. 97 It is interesting to me that social development is so important at the age that some teachers are constantly saying sit down and no talking. Overall, I really enjoyed this chapter because it really helped me refocus on what my students need. Jason Henderson P.84 The zone of proximal development is a useful strategy that allows us to challenge students to reach the next level. An understanding of where your students are intellectually, this gives us an advantage to improve their educational experience. P.86 The lack of development in the frontal lobe in teens is an interesting point. As the text mentions, we often give teens an "adult decision" to deal with, yet they often do not have adult experiences to base a decision on. Will this lead to more studies/experiments in trying to develop this part of the brain at an early age? P.94 The eight systems of school performance is a great indicator of what our students (and us ourselves) are like and how they perform on a regular basis. We can use these tools to help identify potential problem areas or select certain students to perform tasks that are their strong suits.