There I was in a Primary 6/7 class early in my career and having an awful time. I doubted my ability as a teacher and didn’t know how to turn the situation around. It was coming up to Christmas and I decided that I needed to do a large scale project with the class to get them to work as a team and raise their self esteem.
First we looked for a space in the corridor near the main entrance that we could claim for our class. Then we set about producing a Winter street scene. All ideas were valued and the children planned the scene and brainstormed what should go in it. The children then spent a few days drawing and painting individual items for the scene before sticking them onto the frieze paper. Once we had finished the Winter street scene we took great pride in putting it up in the main corridor.
The class loved the feedback they got from other staff and I felt that we had finally become a team and that the children were ready to listen to me as their teacher. I think it is true that if you have high expectations children will rise to meet them. I had lost sight of this in the daily struggle with the class and needed to change the situation quickly.