SCHOOLING (2002)PAGE 195CHAPTER 7–ELEMENTARY SCHOOLING IN AMERICAA. OVERVIEWThis chapter presents information regarding elementary education. Discussionsinclude such topics as horizontal and vertical organization of elementaryschools, curriculum in elementary schools, the administration of elementaryschools, and elementary school teachers. Also discussed are indicators of childabuse or neglect and techniques for teaching diverse school populations.B. KEY TERMS–DEFINITIONSCITIZENSHIP EDUCATION - provided through formal classes such ashistory and civics; children also experience citizenship training throughinformal activities with children from a diversified cross-section of society.CLASSROOM MATERIALS - the textbook being one, other materials are leftup to the teacher. Teachers often make their own materials or modify materialsthat are given to them.COMMON SCHOOLS - free, publicly supported schools for all children;movement began in the mid-1800s. Common schools provided a free, basic,common foundational education program for all children grades 1-8.CURRICULUM - all experience provided to students in school.ELEMENTARY COUNSELING - realization that young children also havecounseling needs. Children with emotional problems and those withcharacteristics that suggest the eventual development of problems, have beentargeted for intervention.GIFTED STUDENTS - a group of students whose abilities are above those ofmost students; these students require specialized programs.GRADED SCHOOLS - schools organized using a step system whereby studentsare usually grouped according to chronological age rather than by abilities.HETEROGENEOUS GROUPING - does not attempt to categorize studentson any specific criteria such as ability or interest. Students are randomly placedin instructional groups (although grouping by age is characteristic of a gradedsystem) without any pre-selection for other characteristics.HOMOGENEOUS GROUPINGS - places children with similarcharacteristics together. Characteristics considered are: academic ability,cultural background, psychomotor development, age, personal and socialadjustment, and interest.
CHAPTER 7–ELEMENTARY SCHOOLING IN AMERICAPAGE 196HORIZONTAL ORGANIZATION - students and teachers need to be organizedinto instructional groups; self-contained classrooms and departmentalization.LITERACY - reading, writing, and arithmetic. Currently schools focus notonly on instruction in the three basic academic areas, but on knowledge of theworld, science, and cultural awareness.MANAGEMENT STYLE - a key factor in how individuals are brought intodecision making and how school district philosophies and policies areimplemented (administrative leadership style).MILIEU - environment.MULTICULTURAL EDUCATION - elementary aged children need an aware-ness of the various cultures and ethnic groups that are represented in America.NONGRADED SCHOOL - an organizational pattern for schools that usestudents’ abilities for grouping rather than assigning students to certain gradesbased on chronological age.PRINCIPAL - administrator in charge of individual schools.SCHOOL POLICIES - gives each school a unique personality; affectsdisciplinary methods, academic expectations and requirements, dress codes,curriculum, and school climate.SELF-CONTAINED - classroom organization where students remain in thesame room with the same teacher all day.SUPERINTENDENT - chief school administration officer in local schooldistricts.THREE R’s - Reading, wRiting, and aRithmetic.VERTICAL ORGANIZATION - the plan of the school for identifying whenand who is ready to enter, as well as the procedures for regulating pupilprogress through the elementary school to a completion point.C. SOME PRECEDING THOUGHTS1. What are the purposes of elementary schools?Elementary schools in the United States are the mandatory beginning pointfor public education. The purposes most frequently stressed include:a. Literacy - began as teaching reading but expanded to include writingand arithmetic.b. Citizenship Education - provided through formal classes such ashistory and civics; children also experience citizenship training throughinformal activities with children from a diverse cross section of society.
SCHOOLING (2002)PAGE 197c. Personal Development - emotional, social, and physical growth areaspects of personal development. Multicultural educational is anotherarea of personal development.2. How do principals provide instructional leadership?One of the most important functions of the principal is in the area ofinstructional leadership. Instructional leadership includes all actions takenby principals, or delegated to others, that promote learning in students.Principals must be able to recognize poor teaching and be able toimplement ways to make teaching better. Principals should also recognizeexemplary teaching skills and should develop incentives and rewards toencourage these teaching styles.3. What are the advantages and disadvantages of graded and nongradedschools?Graded (standard approach to promotion): at its lowest level, gradednessis essentially a lockstep system that encourages teachers to teach to thegroup with a rigid curriculum. Definite strong points include:a. reduces some variability among students;b. it exposes all children to the same curriculum;c. educational materials can be developed for chronological age interests;d. similar chronological age among students facilitates social interactions;e. it is efficient;f. teachers are able to specialize their teaching by focusing on a particularage group;g. minimum standards can be established for each grade level.Nongraded (vertical): this approach allows students to progress at theirown rate throughout the school year. Moving to higher curricular levels isdependent on skills, knowledge, and appreciation in content areas, not timespent. Competencies are used to determine pupils’ locations along thecurricular ladder, not the number of years in school. Extensive reportingand record keeping are required to chart each student’s progress. Studentsare provided with successful experiences, regardless of their location in thecurriculum. Probable causes for lack of popularity:a. too much record keeping;b. great deviation from the traditional graded approach;c. the likelihood that teachers were trained for the graded system;d. the likelihood that many parents do not understand the nongraded format.
CHAPTER 7–ELEMENTARY SCHOOLING IN AMERICAPAGE 1984. What are the roles of philosophy and policy in elementary education?The philosophy and policies of schools give each school a uniquepersonality. What occurs in school and classrooms has a direct relationshipto the underlying philosophy of the school and classroom. Decisions aboutgoals and curriculum rest solidly upon the school’s ideas and beliefs aboutthe nature of the child and how the child learns; about ethics, economics,and other great issues. Philosophy and policies of school affectdisciplinary methods, academic expectations and requirements, dresscodes, curriculum, and school climate.5. What influences elementary schools curricula?a. curriculum includes not only the intellectual content of subjects, but themethods used to teach, the interactions that occur between teachers andstudents, and school sponsored activities; includes all studentexperiences for which the school accepts responsibilities: formalcourses, school sponsored clubs, athletics, and band;b. curriculum results from society and subject matter specialists;c. elementary school curriculum changes relative to the outside world;d. school’s curriculum reflects the attitudes, values, and concerns of society.6. What do elementary teachers do?Elementary teachers perform many roles in facilitating the education oftheir students: social model, evaluator, walking encyclopedia, moderator,investigator, ombudsman, moral builder, leader of the group, substituteparent, target for frustrations, and friend. The role of an elementary teacheris to diagnose learning problems, facilitate independent learning, anddevelop curriculum. Their primary role is that of instructor.7. How can teachers utilize classroom space?a. rugs could be added or taken away to adjust noise levels;b. furniture could be moved to create open or closed spaces for varioustypes of activities;c. certain toys should be removed if they are too distracting;d. some activities could best be conducted outside the classroom;e. use of learning centers;f. spaces for individuals or small groups with materials about specifictopics.
SCHOOLING (2002)PAGE 1998. What are the primary modes of instruction in elementary schools?a. question and answer activities;b. providing individual help;c. reading to students;d. worksheets;e. individual desk activities;f. grouping.9. What special services are available in elementary schools?a. Special Education Services:Public Law 94-142 required schools to:1. locate handicapped children;2. individually assess handicapped children;3. develop individual educational programs for handicapped children;4. provide appropriate services to handicapped children in the leastrestrictive setting (with non-handicapped children);5. annually review the progress of handicapped children to determinethe effectiveness of the services provided.b. Gifted Education Services:Gifted children have been in and out of favor more than any othergroup of children. Currently, the definition of Gifted includes highperformance in creativity, leadership, and visual and performing arts.Some program adaptations that can be made:1. enrichment in regular classes – special materials and lessons areadded;2. consultant teacher – specially trained teachers consult with regularclassroom teacher to suggest activities for gifted children;3. resource room – gifted go to resource room part of the day to workwith a gifted-education specialist;4. mentor – community members with specialized skills work withgifted students either individually or in small groups;5. independent study – students allowed to carry out independentstudy under the supervision of teacher;
CHAPTER 7–ELEMENTARY SCHOOLING IN AMERICAPAGE 2006. special interest classes – specialized content field offered to giftedstudents;7. special schools – schools specially designed for gifted students.c. Counseling ServicesOriginally developed for secondary schools, counseling services havebecome common in elementary schools. The need and benefits ofelementary counseling programs have been greatly documented.10. What are some efficient classroom management practices?a. all is done that is possible to have the proper temperature andventilation;b. the best use is made of available light;c. instructional spaces are kept clean and orderly without limitingworthwhile learning activity;d. all students can see and hear;e. students are moved when a better learning situation can be achieved;f. students are helped to be as comfortable as facilities will permit;g. seating is arranged to accommodate the best possible learning of allstudents;h. conditions are organized so that charts, models, and other training aidsare available when needed and properly stored when not in use;i. the classroom situation is organized to discourage interruption by otherpersonnel in the school;j. students’ progress records are kept up-to-date;k. educational equipment is organized so that it is readily available for usewith a minimum of disturbance;l. classes are started and dismissed on time;m. there is orderly entry by students into classrooms for beginning classesand an orderly exit at the conclusion of classes;n. students are kept productively busy for the full class period;o. standards for the quality of classroom work are maintained;p. the teacher is in the classroom prior to the arrival of students;q. an effective lesson plan is prepared;r. bulletin boards are well prepared with exciting learning materials thatwill motivate students;
SCHOOLING (2002)PAGE 201s. a good, clear assignment is given;t. safety conditions are observed;u. the teacher’s grooming presents a model for students to emulate.11. What are some physical and behavioral indicators of possible abuse orneglect?Physical Indicators Behavioral IndicatorsEmotional Abuse and Neglect• Height and weight significantlybelow age level• Inappropriate clothing for weather• Scaly skin• Poor hygiene, lice, body odor• Child left unsupervised orabandoned• Lack of a safe and sanitary shelter• Unattended medical or dental needs• Developmental lags• Habit disorders• Begging or stealing food• Constant fatigue• Poor school attendance• Chronic hunger• Dull, apathetic appearance• Running away from home• Child reports that no one cares orlooks after him/her• Sudden onset of behavioralextremes (conduct problems,depression)Physical Abuse• Frequent injuries such as cuts,bruises, or burns• Wearing long sleeves in warmweather• Pain despite lack of evident injury• Inability to perform fine motorskills because of injured hands• Difficulty walking or sitting• Poor school attendance• Refusing to change clothes forphysical education• Finding reasons to stay at schooland not go home• Frequent complaints of harshtreatments by parents• Fear of adultsSexual Abuse• Bedwetting or soiling• Stained or bloody underclothing• Venereal disease• Blood or purulent discharge fromgenital or anal area• Difficulty walking or sitting• Excessive fears, clinging• Unusual, sophisticated sexualbehavior/knowledge• Sudden onset of behavioralextremes• Poor school attendance• Finding reasons to stay at schooland not go homeSource: Cates, D.L., Markell, M.A., & Bettenhausen, S. (1995). At risk for abuse: A teacher’s guide forrecognizing and reporting child neglect and abuse. Preventing school failure, 39(2), 6. Adaptedwith permission.
CHAPTER 7–ELEMENTARY SCHOOLING IN AMERICAPAGE 20212. What are some socializing agents that help to transmit culture to thechild?a. Family;b. School;c. Community;d. Neighborhood;e. Peer group;f. Electronic media;g. Sports;h. The arts;i. Print media;j. Workplace;k. Technology.13. What are the components to The Problem Method?a. Creating the setting;b. Establishing pupil ownership;c. Locating and recording information;d. Information sharing and summarization;e. Evaluation.
W H A T S H A L L B E T A U G H TW H E N S H A L L I T B E T A U G H THOWSHALLITBETAUGHTHOWSHALLWHATISTAUGHTBEEVALUATEDT R A D I T I O N S I N N O V A T I O N SPHYSICALA F F E C T I V EPSYCHOMOTORMENTALAFFECTIVECOGNITIVEEMOTIONALSOCIALDEDUCTIVED I D A C T I CS P I R I T U A LI N T U I T I V ES O C I E T YL E A R N I N G P R O C E S SSUBJECTMATTERLEARNERSCHOOLING (2002)PAGE 20314. What are the four fundamental questions of The Idealized Curriculum(Holistic)?a. What shall be taught?b. How shall it be taught?c. When shall it be taught?d. How shall what is taught be evaluated?Copyright 2002ALL RIGHTS RESERVEDDr. WA Kritsonis2005
CHAPTER 7–ELEMENTARY SCHOOLING IN AMERICAPAGE 20415. What are some selected physical and behavioral indicators of physicalabuse and neglect, sexual abuse, and emotional abuse?Physical Indicators Behavioral IndicatorsPhysical Abuse–non-accidental injury to a child that may involve some beatings, burns,strangulation, or human bites• Unexplained bruises, swollen areas• Welts, bite marks, bald spots• Unexplained burns, fractures, abrasions• Evidence of inappropriate treatment ofinjuries• Self-destructive• Withdrawn and/or aggressive extremes• Complaints of soreness or discomfort• Bizarre explanation of injuriesPhysical Neglect–failure to provide a child with basic necessities• Unattended medical needs, lice, poor hygiene• Consistent lack of supervision• Consistent hunger, inadequate nutrition• Consistent inappropriate clothing• Regularly displays fatigue, listlessness• Steals food, begs from classmates• Frequently absent or tardy• Reports there is no caretaker at homeSexual Abuse–sexual exploitation, including rape, incest, fondling, and pornography• Torn, stained or bloody underclothing• Pain, swelling, or itching in genital area• Venereal disease• Frequent urinary or yeast infections• Withdrawal, chronic depression• Hysteria, lack of emotional control• Inappropriate sex play, premature sexknowledge• Excessive seductivenessEmotional Abuse–a pattern of behavior that attacks a child’s emotional development,i.e., name calling, put-downs, terrorization, isolation• Speech disorders• Delayed physical development• Substance abuse• Ulcer, asthma, severe allergy• Habit disorders (sucking, rocking, biting)• Emotional disturbance• Neurotic traits (sleep disorders, playinhibition)• Antisocial, destructive, delinquentSource: Adapted from guidelines posted by Safeguarding our children-united mothers (SOC-UM), atwww.soc-um.org. Reprinted with permission.D. DISCUSSION QUESTIONS AND EXERCISES1. What are some advantages and disadvantages of graded andnongraded organizations?a. Graded advantages: reduces some variability among students; itexposes all children to the same curriculum; educational materials canbe developed for chronological age interests; similar chronological ageamong students facilitates social interactions; it is efficient; teachers areable to specialize their teaching by focusing on a particular age group;and minimum standards can be established for each grade level.
SCHOOLING (2002)PAGE 205b. Graded limitations include: locking students into certain groupsregardless of ability levels and encouraging teachers to teach to thegroup with a rigid curriculum.c. Nongraded advantages: students progress at their own rate throughoutthe school year; identification of skills, knowledge, and appreciationsin content areas, not length of time, are the key to moving on to highercurricular levels; competencies, not the number of years in school, areused to determine pupils’ locations along the curricular sequence;students are provided with successful experiences regardless of theirlocation in the curriculum.d. Nongraded limitations include: too much record keeping; greatdeviation from the traditional graded approach; the likelihood thatteachers were trained for the graded system; and the likelihood thatmany parents do not understand the nongraded format.2. Describe activities performed by the principal related to the role ofinstructional leadership.a. instructional leadership and management, personnel management,financial management, plant management, community relations andstudent management;b. principals must be able to:1. recognize poor teaching and be able to implement better ways ofteaching;2. recognize outstanding teaching and should develop rewards andincentives to encourage these teaching styles.c. instructional leadership is all actions taken by the principal or delegatedto others.3. Should schools act as “parents” to children during the school day?Schools should act to the extent of temporarily assuming the role as aparent by disciplining the child for breaking school rules, but moralsshould not be thrust upon the child. Children learn through observingothers. That is the only way morals should be taught. Although not aprimary focus of elementary education until this century, emotional, social,and physical growth are considered major responsibilities. In general,parenting should be left to the parents.4. Why is multicultural education important?a. to enable children to understand, accept, and identify with cultural anddiverse ethnic groups other than their own; need will become more
CHAPTER 7–ELEMENTARY SCHOOLING IN AMERICAPAGE 206pronounced as daily interactions among culturally diverse individualsincrease;b. elementary-aged children need an awareness of the various culturesand diverse ethnic groups that are represented in the country; childrenfrom these minority groups need to be able to identify with theirgroups; multicultural education can greatly facilitate this process.5. What are some effective ways for teaching students who are immigrants?a. allow students to tell their story through narratives, role playing, andbibliotherapy;b. offer language enrichment program;c. encourage students to do projects using materials in their nativelanguage;d. be sensitive to the problems individuals face in learning a secondlanguage;e. understand the cultural, economic, and historical factors that have had asignificant impact on students;f. teach students about their new culture;g. use nonverbal forms of expression including music, dance, and art;h. use peers and community members as a resource;i. employ media in the students’ native languages;j. offer culturally sensitive in-school and extracurricular activities andencourage students to participate in these activities;k. provide students with access to peer discussion and support groups thatare relevant to their interests and experiences;l. involve parents, extended family members, and knowledgeablecommunity members in the student’s educational program;m. provide students and their families with native language materialsdealing with school-related information and information about theirrights;n. contact the Clearinghouse for Immigration Education (800-441-7192),the National Center for Immigrant Students (617-357-8507), or theNational Coalition of Advocates for Students (617-357-8507),organizations that disseminate information about model schoolprograms and organizations, teacher-made materials, relevant research,
SCHOOLING (2002)PAGE 207and resource lists addressing the needs of immigrant students and theirfamilies.Source: Harris (1991); Nahme Huang (1989) as cited in Salend, S.J. (1998). Effective mainstreaming:Creating inclusive classrooms (3rded.). Columbus, OH: Merrill. Adapted with permission.6. What are some of the national goals for educating Native Americansand Alaska natives?Goal 1: Readiness for school.Goal 2: Maintain native languages and cultures.Goal 3: Literacy.Goal 4: Student academic achievement.Goal 5: High school graduation.Goal 6: High-quality native and non-native school personnel.Goal 7: Safe, alcohol-free, and drug-free schools.Goal 8: Adult education and lifelong learning.Goal 9: Restructuring schools.Goal 10: Parental, community, and tribal partnerships.7. What are some effective guideline for conferencing with students?a. demonstrate caring;b. provide emotional support and security;c. use active or empathic listening;d. do not probe by asking why questions;e. ask what, who, how questions;f. focus on present behavior, not past behavior;g. curtail excessive “venting”;h. refrain from judging the student’s behavior;i. call on students to make value judgments about their behavior; offersuitable alternatives when necessary;j. help students “make a plan” to increase responsible behavior.E. REVIEW ITEMSTrue-False1. Literacy refers to developing skills in reading and writing.2. The power to operate local schools rests in the hands of the state.
CHAPTER 7–ELEMENTARY SCHOOLING IN AMERICAPAGE 2083. Schools were nongraded in Colonial America.4. The term “curriculum” refers only to academic subjects taught in the school.5. “Milieu” is another term for the classroom environment.Multiple Choice1. The instructional leader in the schools should be _______.a. teachers b. department heads c. principal d. superintendent2. The percentage of schools using a nongraded system is about _______.a. 1% b. 10% c. 25% d. 27%3. Characteristics of good teachers include _______.a. stern disciplinary strategies b. likes childrenc. not very organized d. all of the above4. Grouping students with similar characteristics is _______.a. homogeneous grouping b. heterogeneous groupingc. differential grouping d. none of the above