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Ms. Joy, a second grade teacher was about to begin implementing a Classwide Peer Tutoring (CWPT) program. She was unsure of how to get the students to follow the detailed steps of the program and was nervous about whether it would actually work in her class. She was especially worried about how Joshua would react to this new instructional activity. She knew that Ms. Dion, the special education teacher, had helped other teachers in the building with implementing CWPT, so she decided to meet with her during lunch.

"The first thing you have to do is introduce CWPT as an exciting and new activity where all the students will get the chance to work with each other and have the opportunity to help each other learn. This is a great way to build a positive classroom community," Ms. Dion began. "Hmm. I could tell the students that they will get to be the teachers. This will surely get them excited," thought Ms. Joy.

Ms Dion continued, "A critical next step, Ms. Joy, is that you have to be very explicit when teaching the students your expectations for behavior, the kind of feedback the tutor is expected to give, and how the point system works." Ms. Joy's nervousness about CWPT returned, and she began questioning whether her students could follow the guidelines of this program. "Hey, why don't you observe Mr. Lambert's Spanish class? He uses CWPT with his students, and it has made a huge impact on their learning and excitement. I know he would welcome you into his class," suggested Ms. Dion.

"Great idea! It would be great watching CWPT at work. I need that visualization!" offered Ms. Joy.

Observing Mr. Lambert's class was exactly what Ms. Joy needed. She was excited about beginning this program and felt comfortable with using it in her class.

Reflections:

  1. What would be other ways of gaining experience with CWPT, if you did not have a colleague who was experienced in this instructional activity?
  2. Would you feel comfortable approaching other teachers in your building in order to observe their lessons? Why? How would you feel if a teacher asked to observe your class?

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