In a really tough December week this two hours shone out as a great teaching and learning experience.
Before going any further, please head over to my previous post to read about the inspiration for this lesson.
In a nutshell, Sugata discovered that children can teach themselves with the aid of the Internet. His hole-in-the-wall experiment inspired the book that inspired the film Slumdog Millionaire. He has since been investigating how to apply these findings in Western school systems.
I followed some basic rules that Sugata has developed. I split the students into groups, each with a computer and then gave them a problem to solve.
The rules are simple:
- Students were told to get into groups of their choice of around 4 children.
- They had one laptop per group.
- They could walk around and cheat, looking at what the other groups were doing.
- They could move groups if they wanted to.
- No input from me other than some encouragement and praise.
My Year 7 class (11-12 year olds) are an able group who I have done a little group work earlier this year. I gave them a simple question:
Who was Pythagoras?
And with it, the text (but not diagram) of a typical GCSE question:
A ladder is leaning against a wall. It is 5 meters long, the base of the ladder is 3.5 meters away from the wall. How far up the wall does it reach? Continue reading