What am I finding with my data? #seaccr

My second week of data collection was eventful.  I think many of my students really welcomed the new strategies that I introduced to the class.  Although I introduced a dual language math word wall, I wanted the students to understand that I want them to communicate in the language they feel most comfortable using.  However, I did express my hope that all of them would again learn how to count to twenty in their native language.  In fact, every day I give a student the opportunity to stand up in front of class and count to twenty using their native language.  They can count by rote memory or read the words from the word wall.


This week I did a few informal classroom observations.  I created some great activities for our learning objectives and walked around the classroom, along with the aides, to listen to the conversations that were taking place.  I am happy to say that many of the conversations that I witnessed were task-related and the students seemed to be working well together.  I am sad to say that there were a couple of students who seemed adamant about working together.  It was like pulling teeth to get them to work cooperatively on any activity I presented to them.  I tried to get them to understand that it is important for everyone to learn to work with other people in a group or as a team.  I want to point out that this is the second pairing that these students have been put into.  They were originally paired for the first six weeks based on last years MAPS scores.  This second pairing was based not only on their most recent MAPS scores, but also their survey results.  The students who are refusing to work together now were also refusing to work with their first partner in the first six weeks.  Therefore, I believe these students are just reluctant to work with anyone and would rather try the work themselves.  However, some of these same students are also continuously asking me for help whenever they are trying to complete an assignment independently.  I am having trouble trying to find a way to fix this dilemma.  Any suggestions?


Next week I will have some quantitative data to add to my data analysis.  I will continue to create activities the students can use to work cooperatively.  I am hoping my last week of data collection will be as beneficial as the first two.



7 thoughts on “What am I finding with my data? #seaccr

  1. Michelle St.Clair

    The students who insist on working independently and continually ask for help, could you allow them to work alone but tell them to first ask their peers for help before asking you? That way they are able to work alone but are also interacting and collaborating with others as they work on their projects?

    I look forward to hearing about some of the activities you create for collaborative learning!

  2. aksharos

    I am so glad you had an eventful week of data collection. I sure hope that the research project is coming along for you. I know that I am struggling to adjust to this style of learning, however, it is something I can see myself doing in the future. It is just taking awhile to get use to.

    What specific types of data collection have you done thus far? Have they been both quantitative and qualitative? I know that most of what I have done has strictly been qualitative. After reading another peer’s work, I have decided to do a quantitative collection of data through the use of exit slips. I was thinking that would help determine if the strategy I have been using is effective or not.

    I noticed you said you would wrap up your data collection with qualitative data. I recently have used Wordle and love the visual display. It is something to think about.

    Another thing I noticed in your reflection is that some students were apprehensive to working together. How does this affect your data? If it does, I think it is worthy of noting it in your analysis. I know from my experience it is difficult to get some students to work together. One method I just learned was by creating an appointment clock. This might be useful, because it gives the students some control in who they are paired with. It works by having students draw a clock with the 12, 3, 6, and 9, spots for appointments to be made. They get to go around the room and fill their appointment clocks for cooperative work times. It is just an idea, but maybe something to think about when you have reluctant students.

    Maybe during your next reflection you can include more of the data collection and analysis process so we can offer more critical feedback. I appreciate all of your feedback and look forward to reading your upcoming blogs. -Shauna

    1. Amber

      Great suggestions on the clock partners. I’ve tried that in my classroom before (with 3rd graders). Although it didn’t necessarily work for my group of kids, I am interested to see if it works for anyone else. Brandi, be sure to let us know if you try this method!

    2. Lexie Razor

      That sounds like a rough situation with the students that are refusing to work with. Maybe they don’t feel comfortable working with some students. I would possibly talk with them one-on-one and ask them why they are refusing to work with their partners. I would also ask them if there were other students that they would be willing to work with. Another strategy would be that I would take the time and explain to them the importance of the group and how the groups were formed.
      I am sure that your last week of data collection will be just as good. Keep up the great work!

  3. Amber

    Brandi, I too have students who absolutely refuse to work in groups. One way in which I’ve attempted to accommodate for this, is to pretty much bargain with them (ok, probably not the best way to do it…but I too am at a loss). I would make an agreement with them that if they work with their group for-say-5mins, then they can work for the next 5 mins alone. Time definitely varies based on the activity too. For me it is trial an error, and tends to be different for the couple students who refuse to work in groups/partners. Other than that, I too would like some ideas. Thanks for you post, and I look forward to reading the other suggestions that others make to this dilemma.

  4. Ms. Bridges

    Hi Brandi,

    Your data collection sounds like it is going well, despite some uncooperative students. You mentioned that you used both their MAPS scores and the survey results to select partner pairs. Can you explain what you mean by this. Did you pair students who are strong Yup’ik speakers with other strong Yup’ik speakers, or did you pair strong Yup’ik speakers with moderate to low Yup’ik speakers? How did you base your decision? Could this be contributing to students’ reluctance to working together? Also, how necessary is it that the students work together? Can you still collect the data you need and simply adjust your procedures? I hesitant at the idea of “forcing” students to work with others if they choose not to. I think if both students feel fine about working alone then I would let them (unless my research requires it) and if one does but the other does not then maybe asking them to join another group…?

    You mentioned that you did some qualitative data collection through observations, can you tell us how you did this? Was this collected as the students worked with their partners? What did you look for or discover? Did you also collect data from students who participated in counting in Yup’ik in front of class? Are you noticing that only the fluent Yup’ik speakers are volunteering? If so, I would document that. I am interested in knowing if the students who do not feel comfortable speaking in Yup’ik (based on your survey) have volunteered yet.

    This is all great stuff Brandi, keep up the good work! I hope to hear more about what you are collecting and how you are doing it. That will give me a better idea of the themes you are seeing.

    Good luck this week!


  5. bearbear434

    Sounds like you have younger students than I but I will give this a shot.
    I like the idea of talking with them (Jamie B.) That has actually worked for me in the past with behavior issues when students are having a bad day. I am not sure what you might say to them that will be the magic key but I let them know that my job is to teach all the students and that they are making it hard for others to learn. Just a thought most kids don’t really want to hurt others but there are those few that have already learned coercion and truly won’t care.
    My first thought was a timer too but realized that has been done. What about not using a timer but telling them to work on the 1st question then check with their partner. For young students I have also used the Ask 3 Before Me. Today I had a few of the older students that need more time with multiplication come in and work with my students as they were introduced to it. They did well helping. Would any of your students respond to an older Roll model, or is that even an option? Another idea is having them work with a younger student if you think there is a confidence issue.
    Incentives that are really fun for working as a good partner may help. Also, is the group work always wrote assignment work? How do they do with a mural or a bulletin board. Something to create that is academic but doesn’t seem like that to a student. I was looking on http://www.Interventioncentral.org
    for many of my in class issues. if you have not checked it out see what it has to offer. Maybe search little or no peer interaction. If you want to try incentives there is a large list of ideas there too.


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