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Student Case Study Kay Stafford EDIT 791 Section 5T3 Fall 2004 I. Initial Four Students: Marshall, Esmeralda, Jonathan and Yasmin Marshall 10 year old male 5th grader in 4/5 class Mother, Caucasian Father, African-American Marshall’s identical twin brother attends the same school and is enrolled in another class Background: Marshall lives with his mother, his twin bother and his college-age older brother and sister when they are home from school. Marshall attends extended day at Campbell. The twins have attended Campbell since Montessori pre-school. They continue to confound everyone – no one can tell them apart. Hobbies & Interests: Drawing Making things Anything artistic Plays the clarinet in the school band School: Marshall is a strong academic student and is identified as gifted in science, as well as reading and social studies. His performance on standardized tests has netted highly proficient results. His DRP level is 60. His work is completed on time and usually has many drawings or illustrations either as a part of his work or adorning the margins. Marshall has many friends. He is easy-going and kind. He doesn’t take part in the very serious soccer game each recess. Instead, he can be observed with many friends inventing stories and engaging in social play as they cover most of the outdoor space – walking, running, climbing and talking. After school Marshall attends extended day and continues his escapades with his social circle. Observation during Writer’s workshop: Room darkened. Two teachers with class of 24 students. One teacher reading through writing example on overhead. Marshall attends to (looking at) the overhead. Appears to reading the text. Stretches. Makes eye contact with the other teacher and smiles. Uses his pencil eraser to erase something on his hand. No reaction to open-ended question posed by teacher. No reaction to humorous section of text. Begins drawing on cover of writing journal. Draws for several minutes. Second teacher walks by, bends down and speaks to Marshall. He stops drawing. Marshall refocuses on overhead. Appears to be reading along with the text. Stretches. Returns to drawing. Second teacher takes the lead teaching role. Marshall begins writing in his journal. Teacher asks Marshall to “wait a minute.” Marshall returns to writing in his journal. Writes steadily for 30 minutes. Marshall’s first write of “Harper’s Ferry” is available in hard copy in class. Esmeralda 10 year old female 5th grader in a 4/5 class Both Parents, Hispanic Parents are from El Salvador Esmeralda was born in United States Background: Esmeralda lives with her parents and her younger brother who also attends Campbell School. The children transferred to Campbell two years ago. Esmeralda’s parents have expressed a high level of expectation for their daughter. Spanish is her first language and is the language spoken at home. Hobbies & Interests: Esmeralda plays flute in the school band. School: Esmeralda is a strong academic student. Her performance on the fourth grade Virginia history standardized test netted highly proficient results. Her DRP level is 50. Her work may not be completed on time. Esmeralda has been very quiet throughout her time at Campbell. She seldom raises her hand to speak in class. She is slow to warm-up to people and to assigned school work. She has a very small group of friends. Her closest friend (who nicknamed her Ez- me) has moved on to middle school. Observations during Writer’s Workshop: Room darkened. Two teachers with class of 24 students. One teacher reading through writing example on overhead. Esmeralda turns in her seat to see the overhead. Her face is away from the observer. She sits in the same position in her seat throughout the reading and teacher instruction. Does not respond to the teacher’s open-ended question. Makes a funny face in reaction to funny part of text in the general direction of her seatmates. Turns in seat when second teacher begins more lesson. Opens journal and begins writing. Writes without talking to others at her table. Writes for 30 minutes – but not steadily. Often looks up in thought. Esmeralda’s writing sample is available as a hard copy in class. Jonathan 10 year old male 5th grader in a 4/5 class Both Parents, Hispanic Parents are from Bolivia Jonathan was born in United States Background: Jonathan lives with his parents and his older brother who attends Kenmore Middle School. He has attended Campbell School since kindergarten. Jonathan’s parents have expressed a high level of expectation for their son. Spanish is his first language and is the language spoken at home. Jonathan’s family have hired a tutor to help him with his academic work. Hobbies & Interests: Anything and everything to do with soccer. School: Jonathan struggles academically. He is identified as having a speech language disability and receives 10 hours of special education services in the areas of reading comprehension, writing and mathematics problem-solving. Jonathan has many friends who share his love of soccer. He attends the Arlington Mill center for after-school care. Observations during Writer’s Workshop: Room darkened. Two teachers with class of 24 students. One teacher reading through writing example on overhead. Jonathan is sitting right next to the overhead. He has to turn his neck and head in order to see the screen. The teacher suggests that he turn his chair in order to see well. He does. He looks up at the screen, but doesn’t maintain his focus. He looks down. His feet don’t reach the floor in the chair he is sitting in. He swings his feet. His focus goes up to the screen, down to his journal laying closed on the table, to the faces of the other students sitting with him, then back to the screen. Straightens his pencil and journal several times. Opens spiral. Looks in. Smiles. Closes spiral. Jonathan raises his hand to answer open-ended question. Doesn’t get called on. When the second teacher tells the students to open their spirals, Jonathan opens his right away. He writes slowly. His writing sample is available as a hard copy in class. Yasmin 9 year old female 4th grader in a 4/5 class Both Parents, Hispanic background Parents born in America, attended Wakefield High School & married before graduation Background: Yasmin lives with her parents, older brother and younger sister. Her older brother attends Kenmore Middle School. Her younger sister is a toddler. English and Spanish, mixed, are her first languages and is the language experience of her home. Her mother does not work outside the home. Yasmin goes directly home at the end of the school day. Hobbies & Interests: Unknown to the observer School: Yasmin’s school performance is average. Her DRP level is 40. She passed each of the 3rd grade SOLs, with minimally proficient scores. She is quiet in class, but makes contributions when encouraged by her teachers. Yasmin’s older brother sometimes picks her up after school and then walks home with her. Yasmin has several friends among the 4 th grade girls. Observations during Writer’s Workshop: Room darkened. Two teachers with class of 24 students. One teacher reading through writing example on overhead. Looks at the overhead at first. Begins to fuss with her shoe, without revealing this to her teachers. Stretches. Laughs quietly with student sitting next to her. Attends to the overhead. She ignores her seatmate who takes her pencil. Off task looking at her seatmate. Yasmin opens her spiral. The girls both look in Yasmin’s spiral. They smile and talk quietly together. Begins drawing on her writing folder. Continues drawing and talking quietly to seatmate. Begins work right away when instructed to by teacher. She writes steadily, continuing to talk quietly with her seatmate. Her writing is available as a hard copy in class. II. Selection of One Student for In-depth Study Esmeralda I chose Esmeralda to observe again because I wanted to understand more about her learning style. Observation during science class experiment – making individual parachute: Independently gets all the materials needed. Shows A. the materials she has. Waits for A. to come back with her materials. Watches A. lay out the paper and tape the strings. Begins to make hers. Laughs with others at the table about the tape. Puts the parachute together readily. Watches V. get stretch up to release her parachute. Looks at the teacher when she speaks to V. Last to finish at her table. She reaches up to test fly her parachute. Smiles (her dimples showing).
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