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Tools for responding to students

Contributors: A panel of distinguished teachers

You must teach each student in your class, and you must teach your whole class.  There's the rub...  (more)

The work of a community is to affirm who we are as individuals
and who we can become together. We are gifts to one another.
Our diversity adds richness to what we can offer each other.
                     --Penelope J. Wald and Michael S. Castleberry*

The ASSIST website has been developed to help beginning teachers, mentors and other educators reach their full potential within the teaching craft. This level of effectiveness can only be achieved by creating a learning community around one's students and reaching outwards from them. We must see each student as a valued member of that community, and they must be helped to feel that stature. Each students adds richness. Their differences in perspectives, learning styles, language, cultural backgrounds, and many other factors all must be taken into account, and made into advantages, by the effective teacher.

In this special section on Responding to all students, we have pulled together tools and resources from the ASSIST site in order to present fresh ideas for engaging all students. We have organized it by questions to help you focus on the aspects of your teaching where you need better ways to reach and teach the students who are not responding as you would like them to.

Question-by-question guide for reaching all students

1. How can I form a classroom learning community in which all students feel like valued members?

2. How can I learn more about my students' families and involve them in our learning community?

3. How can I plan units and lessons that will maximize the success of all students?

4. How should I respond to students who are inattentive or distractive?

5. How can I get all students involved in class discussions?