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The Confusing World of High School Reading

Tom Nicholson

In The Confusing World of High School Reading (Part 1): What the Teacher Doesn't See I reported the results of a recent study which showed that teaching a class of high school pupils can be deceptive. Sometimes the surface structure of the classroom indicates effective teaching, while in the minds of the pupils there is a maze of confusion that the teacher does not see. I also argued that to see these confusions, teachers need to become researchers in their own classrooms. It would mean changing the way we teach, so that the teacher can sometimes, or even often, move off the front stage. It would mean creating opportunities to talk with just one pupil at a time. Yet overseas research shows that teachers are not very good at this. A recent study has shown that much of a teacher's time is spent in assigning, organising and testing reading. Somehow, teachers seem to get caught up in managing what goes on in the classroom, so there is little time left for getting alongside pupils and talking with them.

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