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Essay on Planning and Preparing for Teaching and Learning.

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The role of the teacher is very similar to the role of the mainstream teacher. Planning meaningful sessions, keeping accurate records of sessions and assessing the individual students’ abilities are among the more obvious responsibilities and these areas will be discussed later.
It could be argued that the main difference between the teacher and the mainstream teacher is found in the level of one-to-one support given to each student. This difference is a direct result of the group sizes taught by the teacher and the academic levels of the students. The teacher will often have groups ranging from two to eight students over ninety minute sessions, the length of the sessions and the groups sizes2 enables the teacher to prepare session plans that are much more focused on the individual whereas the mainstream teacher will have to accommodate for the majority within each class, leaving the lesser able students to enter into a vicious cycle of learning3. Gravells points out that “You should be careful not to indulge the minority at the expense of the majority” (Gravells, 2010:25). In the mainstream context Gravells is right, with mainstream class sizes in key stage four and five remaining stable over previous years (Department for Education, 2010). The mainstream teacher must concentrate their delivery to the majority ability in the room. There are no ‘average levels of ability’ within a typical CANTO group. Gravells (2010) points out that students with learning disabilities should not be tagged as ‘disabled’ but to be seen “as an individual with a variation in ability” (Gravells, 2010:25) compared to mainstream students. These small groups allow the teacher to plan4 and prepare variations of activities with the same outcome suited t...


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Health and safety at Work Act 1974, (c.37), London: HMSO.

Downes, S 2007, 'Models for Sustainable Open Educational Resources', Interdisciplinary Journal Of Knowledge & Learning Objects, 3, pp. 29-44, Education Research Complete, EBSCOhost, Accessed: 09 January 2014.
Topping, K., Miller, D., Thurston, A., Mcgavock, K. and Conlin, N. 2011. Peer tutoring in reading in Scotland: thinking big. Literacy, 45 (1), pp. 3--9.

Saunders, D. 1992. Peer tutoring in higher education. Studies in Higher Education, 17 (2), pp. 211--218.

Mcleod, S. 2007. Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs. [online] Available at: http://www.simplypsychology.org/maslow.html, Accessed: 9 Jan 2014.


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