single sex tables in primary class?(5 Posts)
Just that really. Trying to work out new groups for my class and considering having all boys and all girls tables. They move around for different subjects and will be mixed up then. Any comments?
How big is the class and will you still have children of similar ability and working temprement on same tables.
DS is in a slightly small class, an all boy table for him for maths wid be a table of 3 while a similar size table if girls would also exsist. Each of these tables having one or two children working at top level and one or two just a step below.
Small class and yes, children of similar ability and working style, which is why it could fall out this way.
I've had girl and boy guided reading groups which has worked as they get to choose their books and tend to prefer similar to each other in the group. I'd worry that your tables would get difficult to manage behaviourally. The boys may mess about and the girls may get catty. I know this is a stereotype but sadly does tend to be true.
It depends very much on your class and the different personalities within it.
I've got some single-sex guided reading groups:
- L4 target: mixed
- L5 target: 1 girls' and 1 boys' group
- L6 booster: all-boys group
- L6: mixed
They work quite well and especially my boys have made great progress. They tend to be quite competitive and we don't have the issue of them thinking that they should sit back and let the girls answer everything (they are very capable of holding their own in a mixed group by now, but weren't terribly confident to start with).
In English, I tend to mix, but they sit either boy/boy or girl/girl (although I have a focus group which consists of just boys). In Maths, I usually have single-sex tables (the only exception being my current L6 booster group, who I have mixed and teach separately at present). This has been particularly beneficial for my lower-attaining girls, because they aren't in ability groups. They feel safer comparing their answers and getting things wrong when working with their friends and without having boys at their table. It also means that they challenge themselves more frequently and access tasks, which are generally at a higher level.
For everything else, they choose where they sit.
I have to admit, though, I haven't generally got an issue with my boys "messing about" or my girls "getting catty". My boys are very well-behaved on the whole. They work hard, follow instructions first time, are keen to do well and have developed into very independent and organised learners. They are an absolute joy to teach. My girls are very supportive of each other, work together well, start to get to the point where they chat a little less and get the work done, develop their tasks further and are also very keen to do well. They tend to be a little more floaty and go off into weird directions at times, but certainly aren't out to be nasty to others.
For my class, single-sex groups work well. I've had them for quite a while, though, so know them well. For other classes, which I have had in the past, that wouldn't have been the case.
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