After reading Joe Bower's post on covering the curriculum, I find myself conjuring up images of Eddie Murphy and his stand up routine where he talked about chasing the ice cream truck, screaming "ICE CREAM!" at the top of his lungs. Only I'm yelling "STOP THE BUS!" and I'm the bus driver. Not quite six weeks into the school year, and I have to figure out what I'm going to do about my route.
You see, clearly, a large portion of my students have failed to learn some key concepts. With such a large number, the obvious answer is to reteach it. But how many times? Do I stop the bus or simply slow it down and leave the door open, hoping the kids will be able to jump on with minimal injury? How do I use RtI? Can it be the back up transportation plan or just an excuse I use to not stop the bus?
My heart says stop the bus. My brain says stop the bus. At least part of my brain does. The other part sees the standard course of study mandated by the state. That same part of my brain sees learning goals like the one prompting this post and thinks they SHOULD HAVE been learned before this year anyway. Do I keep 80% of the kids from their destination because 20% are too slow? How do I drive several different busses at once?
It really is a no-brainer - the bus HAS to be stopped. But it is SOOOOO much easier to say than do.