With many schools across the country planning a full return to in-person classes this fall, educators are bracing themselves for historic levels of interrupted learning. Many school districts have managed to minimize the damage, but tens of thousands of students will be behind and underprepared when the autumn semester commences. Fortunately, there are plenty of intervention methods teachers and administrators can implement to mitigate interrupted learning. We’ll explore a few here.
High Dosage Tutoring
One of the most effective, data-supported methods for curbing pandemic-related interrupted learning is high-dosage tutoring: one qualified tutor (either a certified teacher or a recent graduate with a relevant degree) devoting their attention to a small group of students (no more than five at a time).
STEMscopes Math was designed for both large- and small-group instruction. Our curriculum writers know from their experience in the classroom that, while large-group instruction certainly has its place, small-group instruction works wonders for so many students. However, many districts lack the staff to implement high-dosage tutoring effectively, which is why STEMscopes Math is such a useful resource. Our built-in small-group lessons and activities will help teachers approximate the kind of high-dosage tutoring that has proven to be effective. Lessons and activities are designed for small groups, with the assumption that they will be delivered and overseen by one instructor.
It is likely that this year more students will need intervention than in the past. If the majority of your students seem to be behind this fall, you should consider blocking time for intervention. During this time, instructors can revisit below-grade content and reteach lessons they have recently taught, as needed.
STEMscopes Math was created to help teachers meet the demands of a wide range of learning levels and styles. Our curriculum is built on Roger Bybee’s 5E model with the additions of Accelerate and Intervention, features unique to STEMscopes Math. Intervention includes lessons and activities that reinforce academic content, helping mitigate interrupted learning while building a solid foundation for future learning. STEMscopes Math Intervention supplies a wide range of content and activities for teachers to choose from for dedicated intervention.
There is at least one given for every school year: Some students will struggle in your class. The upcoming autumn semester represents a fresh start in education, albeit a difficult one. With more students struggling this year, it’s time to incorporate productive struggle as a salient feature of your teaching philosophy and practice. Productive struggle occurs when students feel challenged but persist in learning academic content, thereby developing “grit.” Grit means perseverance—continuously trying one’s hardest even when the going gets tough. Productive struggle, therefore, enables students to learn difficult concepts and fosters in them a virtue that will serve them well beyond the math classroom.
The 2021-22 school year is going to be hard, but there is much to be grateful for. For example, most schools are finally meeting in person. Students and teachers will interact face to face. Students won’t be isolated. Schools can better assist the most vulnerable students. Hope springs eternal; now, it is finally blooming. Let’s enter this year not with trepidation, but with cheer and gratitude.