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Dr. Caroline Ramsey Musselwhite

Monday, April 4, 2022

Don't Stress - It's Fun to Guess!!

 Don't Stress – It's Fun to Guess!

Intro.  I've been saying this a lot to students in the past few months.  Decided to make a meme and write about it!

The Problem.  Many students with disabilities have high rates of anxiety.  This is especially true for individuals with Angelman, Rett, or Pitt Hopkins syndromes.  Add to that the concern that students on IEPs are in a 'constant testing' mode (Tanya will do X with 90% accuracy on 4 of 5 consecutive days), and the problem is compounded .  . .  sometimes to the point that students stop taking risks.

It's important that we model the joy of making predictions . . . and that it's okay if your guess isn't always right.  In fact, often when a guess is wrong, it helps educators know what students are thinking, and helps us give informative feedback.  This informative feedback is a huge part of teaching.  I will do several posts about this in the coming months.  The first one is about making guesses about something very concrete – animals!

Guess (Predict) The Animals You Will See.  We made predictions of animals we would see:  in real life (at a zoo field trip), in a video, and in a book.  Then we compared those predictions to what we actually found.

 Animal Prediction. at the Zoo.  Took a photo of our prediction and used it as a background in the free Doodle Buddy app.  Then used the pen tool to check off items that we found.  Each family also had the same list on a portable whiteboard, so they could check them off.  

Animal Prediction in a Video.  The group was reading Dr. Dolittle as part of Readtopia®.  For the 'anchor' activity of a Close Reading (Article + Sidebar), we were asked to re-watch a video shot at a waterhole in Africa.  Before we watched it, student's predicted animals they would see.  We wrote each animal unto the Doodle Buddy app, using the pen too.  After we watched the video, students discussed which animal we had actually seen, and we marked it off using a sticker of an alligator.  

Stay Tuned for More Posts About the Productive Use of Guessing!

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