We've had a number of in-class conversations about streaming recently, and I took the opportunity to crystalise my thoughts by responding to another student's posting in a discussion forum about a school they had visited that uses streaming for English and Math and is achieving good NAPLAN results. Thought I might share it here for those that are curious…
Without doubt, if high average NAPLAN scores is all you are seeking to achieve within a school, streamed numeracy and literacy classes are probably a sound strategy. Drilling with 'NAPLAN style' tests is also a sound strategy. As is cutting art, sport, and most of HSIE to give more time to maths and English. How far are you willing to go for those beloved green boxes in the MySchool NAPLAN tables?
- Is this being achieved across the board, or is it primarily the result of better outcomes for one subgroup (say the higher achievers) doing much better, and what implications does that have for everyone else?
- What are the implications for self-esteem, self-efficacy and
- Are we content with such an individualistic environment, or are we seeking to create a collegial, collaborative classroom?
- While we are streaming numeracy and literacy, why not stream art and PE? Is there a single valid reason why you would not pull out all the more athletic or more artistically inclined kids into an 'A' stream for that subject?
- Teaching numeracy and literacy in a streamed mode means that they are taught exclusive of other KLAs. Does this mean we miss out on the opportunity to create meaningful integration across the curriculum?