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  Case: Cannot Cooperate
Aisha is known as a responsible and smart student. I have known her for the last two years, but this year is the first time she is taking one of my classes. She is in my 10th grade US History class. Recently, I started using small group projects in my class. I simply want my students to learn to cooperate, exchange ideas, and produce the project together. Although Aisha is willing to take part in these small group projects, she does not want to be in groups with male students because of her religious beliefs. When she told me about this, I told her that she was in the United States and that she had to work with whoever she is in a group with. In the first group project, Aisha was in a group with three males and one female students. She simply did not participate in any of the group activities. I wonder if should reconsider my original position on this issue and accommodate Aisha by having her work only with girls. Would I be doing her a disservice? What should I do?
Solution: (Rates are posted for this solution!)
I would contact Aisha's parents to discuss these beliefs and see if she was able to work with male students. I would ask if there was a difference in her working one-on-one with a male students versus working in a group of both male and female students. I would explain the benefits of working with both males and females. If the parents consented, I would gradually integrate Aisha into a groups with male students. Initially a group of 4 females and 1 male may make Aisha more comfortable and gradually change the ratio of male and female students. If Aisha's parents did not consent, then I would respect their religious beliefs, while continuing to maintain an open conversation about the topic with both Aisha and her parents.
The suggested solution is respectful of the individual (student) Yes
The suggested solution is relevant to the case Yes
The suggested solution is reasonable (easy) for the teacher to implement Yes
The suggested solution is likely to solve the problem/issue Yes
The suggested solution is original Yes
Comments: I like the idea of getting her parents involved because it might not even be a religious reason she does not want to be in a group with males. So its a good way to confirm her reasons for not wanting to group with guys.
Rated On: October 19, 2014 11:36 pm
Rated By: Adam Sanchez