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Posted on March 9, 2015 5:05 pm
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ySyNyQ
ySyNyQ
Reps: 129
Needy Students
I currently teach 8th grade and my students are so very needy. They constantly ask the same exact questions and want me to give them the answer. They do not want to look for the information themselves. I can stand in front of the classroom and provide them with explanations for specific questions on a handout and as soon as I hand it out, they are asking me questions over the topics I just covered minutes ago. When I give students independent practice, they cannot do any of it on their own. They want me to hold their hand and walk them through each question even after I have already given them notes with all of the information in them. What can I do to encourage my students to be more independent?
 
     
     
 
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Solution 1
Posted March 9, 2015 6:53 pm

Jonelle J
Jonelle J
Reps: 104
I see the same thing in my 10th grade classroom, which shows that students of any level are capable of this, especially if any teacher in the past has "given in." Similar to the solution above, my students work in peer groups so they are not 100% dependent on me. However, I tell them they must "Ask 3, then Me" when they have a question. They can even move around to other groups (1 student of the 28 should be able to answer the question). If it gets to the point where they make it to me, I use several guiding questions and make them tell me what to do, as if it were a test. Usually, once they realize I won't give them the answer so easily, they would rather try it on their own.
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Rezaty
Rezaty
Reps: 102
Thanks for sharing
  Posted on: March 11, 2015 4:16 pm

unuhaj
unuhaj
Reps: 102
Good insight. Thanks for your input.
  Posted on: March 13, 2015 2:09 pm

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Solution 2
Posted March 14, 2015 1:30 am

yTaSuD
yTaSuD
Reps: 128
Assign each student a work buddy. Set the expectation at the beginning of the year that they need to treat their buddy as their accountability partner. If they need help with something that is not directly related with struggling with content, they need to ask their work buddy and even one more person before they come to ask you. If they don't ask their work buddy repeatedly and they continue to not listen and disrupt class, then punishment has to come into play.
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Solution 3
Posted March 10, 2015 7:16 pm

PejuQe
PejuQe
Reps: 100
I teach 2nd grade (and this would be expected!) but we begin preparing our students for a more independent environment when they move on to 3rd grade. By doing this, I have peer groups as well. They must ask 3 people then come ask me if none of those 3 people were able to assist them or provide and explanation. I also have designated peer "tutors" that students can go to when we aren't in peer groups but I may be working with another small group of students. They still have some type of reliance on another person but begin to see that they don't always have to ask "the teacher".
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Comments posted for this solution

Rezaty
Rezaty
Reps: 102
Thanks for sharing
  Posted on: March 11, 2015 4:16 pm

unuhaj
unuhaj
Reps: 102
Good insight. Thanks for your input.
  Posted on: March 13, 2015 2:09 pm

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Solution 4
Posted March 10, 2015 2:03 am

uPaVuT
uPaVuT
Reps: 102
It might be helpful for students to have a reference checklist while they are beginning to work independently. Having a list of options to refer to before they talk to others and you for help. By having a checklist, you are providing them a visual way to problem solve as well as building their exposure to ways to problem solve. I am envisioning math homework from your example. So their checklist might include referring to pages 10-15 for topic 5 help, look at number 1 for step-by-step instructions; look at note pages 2 and 3; go to this website and type in the math problem you are working on; etc. Providing them with a list of options to choose from so they can go through all the steps for themselves could potentially help. That way if they have come to you, you could say, "have you done number one on your checklist?" If they have gone through everything and nothing has helped, then it is time for your support.
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Comments posted for this solution

Rezaty
Rezaty
Reps: 102
Thanks for sharing
  Posted on: March 11, 2015 4:15 pm

unuhaj
unuhaj
Reps: 102
Good insight. Thanks for your input.
  Posted on: March 13, 2015 2:08 pm

meXyHy
meXyHy
Reps: 158
If I were in this situation, I would exactly do this.
  Posted on: October 15, 2015 9:48 pm

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Solution 5
Posted March 13, 2015 7:15 pm

qaqyvy
qaqyvy
Reps: 135
I think the solution for this is something that you must do with them from day one. Students in a sense have to be reprogrammed each school year on how to do things. So, begin the school year by telling the students how you structure your lessons. For example, lecture, group practice, then independent practice. Then show them what is expected of them during each part of the lesson. Do some modeling exercises where you show them what is expected of them during each part. Explain consequences for not meeting those expectations, such as loss of privileges and/or low grades.
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Solution 6
Posted March 9, 2015 5:13 pm

ZutyMa
ZutyMa
Reps: 100
I have the same issue in my 8th grade classroom. I like having peer groups. I allow my students to work in groups and explain to them, that when they are in groups, the "teacher" (me) is no longer the "teacher". Someone in the group has to answer the questions regarding the content. I will answer any questions that deal with how to do and what to do. This seems to work well in my class because at least one person in the group has to know what was covered to be able to answer questions from their peers.
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Comments posted for this solution

Rezaty
Rezaty
Reps: 102
Thanks for sharing
  Posted on: March 11, 2015 4:15 pm

unuhaj
unuhaj
Reps: 102
Good insight. Thanks for your input.
  Posted on: March 13, 2015 2:09 pm

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Solution 7
Posted October 12, 2015 12:58 am

gyteMe
gyteMe
Reps: 90
You can guide your students to a certain point then tell them this is as far as you will take them and that the rest is up them because you would like to see what kind of strategies they are using to support their answers. Also, iterate that they will soon be high-school students and teachers there do walk them through the entire process if at all. Let them know its time to transition into independent learners from dependent learners.
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Solution 8
Posted October 11, 2015 5:26 am

deRudu
deRudu
Reps: 82
As a 6th grade teacher, I have a bit of experience with this also. Sometimes I think it is less of a needy student and more of a lazy student. I have a saying that when your hand is up, your ears are closed. Often, they want to ask questions while I am in the middle of giving directions. My solution is they are not allowed to raise their hand if I am talking, AND they have to try on their own first. Those that do and are successful get some sort of prize. It is as small as a cap eraser or as grand as a treat, or a special chair for the day. It works wonders, especially when they are made aware of how many questions they ask.
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