Monday, March 14, 2011

Yay or Nay?

I found out last week that Kay's teacher is "looping" up to second grade next year. Looping is a teacher term that means the teacher moves with his or her students to the next grade level, rather than sending them to another teacher at the end of the school year. She sent home a letter stating that she wants to keep her same class and move with all of them to second grade. Some of the benefits are an easier transition, familiarity with the class and teacher, and a gain of 4-6 weeks of instructional time because the students already know classroom routines and expectations and the teacher knows the students academic levels and abilities.

I totally see how this could be a huge benefit to her and to her getting started in second grade, but I am not sure what I am going to do yet. I hesitate because I know how different teachers are and what n impact they have on our children. I think that it is important for Kay to be exposed to all different types of learning environments and teaching styles. Her Kindergarten teacher and now first grade teacher are worlds different. And I think that's good! I LOVED her kindergarten teacher, she really was one of a kind in many ways. Her current teacher I do really like, but I almost feel like a change could be beneficial as well. Her teacher now is very big on reading, which is so important and Kay has really come a long long way in first grade. But I don't *love* her like I loved her kindergarten teacher. But don't get me wrong, I do like her and think she is a great teacher, so that's not the issue. It would be so easy to decide if I didn't like her, but I do and so that cant be the deciding factor.

So I'm torn. There seems to be pros and cons to this whole thing and I just feel like I need some advise. If you were in my shoes, what would you do?


Dana said...

That's a tough one! I don't think I would keep Samantha with the same teacher though. If you keep her with the same teacher 2 years in a row that's just going to make 3rd grade all that much harder. Change is good and a fresh perspective from a different teacher and new kids would be beneficial IMO.

Emily said...

I've been following your blog for alittle bit now and haven't commented yet. I don't have kids yet so take my opinion for whatever it's worth :-) I'd keep her in the class for now. She's only in 2nd grade, she has tons of time for new teachers. I think for now the pros are greater than the cons especially if most of the same kids stay and she likes them.
I went to a small private school and always had the same kids in my class like k-8. We had some of the same teachers year after year and it was great already knowing your classmates and the teachers. Knowing what's expected of you and what you can expect from a teacher is amazing. Can really be a boost in learning and a confidence booster too. Frees up a lot of time to focus on other things!

Sorry for the super long comment! I'm sure whatever you decide will work out great. Don't sweat it. =-)

Erika said...

I'll come from a teacher's perspective for ya :). I think looping is crazy! I have loved each of my classes. These last few years moving to new grade levels (from 1st to 1st/2nd combo to 3rd) I have had some of my same students two different years/2 years in a row. Unless EVERY student is going to be the same you're still going to have to teach procedural stuff. (and maybe your area is different but kids are always moving in and out around here) Also, unless you've had experience teaching the new curriculum you're like a first year teacher all over again.

Overall, it's not something I would ever choose to do. I'm as much in need of a new group of kids each year no matter how much I adore them individually. There's a reason it's set up the way it is, I think!

So there's my two cents worth. Don't know if it's helpful or not. Good luck making this decision! Honestly, either way you go with it, it will be a different experience for Kay next year because of all the factors.

Amy said...

To me, it would depend on who the other teacher would be and if i knew she would be put in a classroom with a 'better' teacher.

I see a lot of pluses though, i think like they say, they learn more as the first few weeks since they are not spent on getting to know the students and all that but I see another side as I work with kids (not as a teacher but I deal a lot w.schools) I see the social side which in a way can be just as important. Does she have friends in this class and would she have the same kind of comfort in another classroom with a new set of kids? Depending on all that, that would be how i'd make a decision. I have nothing against looping or moving kids on. I think each has it's own + and - and it really depends on the child and the factors that play in :)

As far as academics, 3rd grade starts to get tougher and having more time to work on academics those first few weeks could really help in the transistion to 3rd grade. Good luck with the decision!

Lalla said...

I've been following your blog for awhile now but have never commented.

I teach high school so my perspective will not be the same but like the other teacher said, when I teach a class for the first time, it's almost like I'm a new teacher. Sure I already have my classroom strategies and procedures, but new curriculum is new curriculum.

Lisa said...

see I knew I had a few teacher readers, so I am glad I posted this!!

After talking with DH, the principle, and Kay herself, I think we are going to loop her and keep her with her teacher. Thanks for all of your input, I really do appreciate it!!

Kimberly said...

When I was a kid I had a teacher like this that went from 1st to 3rd grade and I was in both of her classes. She was my ABSOLUTE favorite teacher of all times and was an amazing influence in my life. But she was a GREAT teacher (not that I knew much back in those grades) but I still remember things she taught me to this day.

I would only recommend it if you feel K would benefit from the relationship and teaching style of this teacher. Not because of level of comfort or avoiding change. Only if you really think this teacher has a positive learning experience to offer her.

Lalla said...

I felt a little guilty after I posted because I remembered that my 1st grade teacher moved up with me to 2nd grade and I flourished! Glad you came to decision that makes everyone happy!