What’s Right With Our Schools: Oak Hill Middle School adopts PALS Strategy

MILLEDGEVILLE, GEORGIA (41NBC/WMGT) – Some students say they learn better from their classmates rather than teachers.

A school in Baldwin County is using a method that will allow students to learn from each other.

“It helps me with my reading because I can understand better what I’m reading than when I’m doing it alone,” says sixth grader, Niyah Griffin.

Peer Assistant Learning Strategy or “PALS” is a new technique that Oak Hill Middle School is using that supports students with their reading while working in pairs. Some students tell me the team effort makes comprehension a lot easier.

“When I’m doing it with my partner I can pronounce words better. They can help me understand what I’m reading,” Griffin continues.

“If I’m the one who is giving the lesson, I only get to interact with a couple of students at a time.They get an opportunity to have that intimate session in pairs and they don’t feel kind of threaten as far as speaking up in from of the class,” says sixth grade teacher Krystle Stanley.

When they stumble across unfamiliar words, having that extra help beside them really helps.

Sixth grader, Jayden Watson says,”When my pal partner is reading, I understand it better than when I’m reading.”

“They can help you and you don’t have to try to sound it out on your own,” sixth grader Layla White explains.

“I can comprehend it better and I can work with that person better,” sixth grader Nebthet Reid-el adds.

Teachers say using this strategy is effective. It’s not only helping students with their reading and comprehension skills but it’s also helping them build relationships.

Dr. Linda Ramsey, principal of Oak Hill Middle School says,”The students as they leave middle school and leave high school and go out into society to get jobs, that is working in groups. They are going to have to work with each other and that is what they’re doing.”

Reading, understanding the material and interacting with each other is what’s helping these students prepare for the next chapters in their lives.

PALS Strategy is being used in Social Studies and Science as well.

Categories: Local News, Special Report, What’s Right With Our Schools

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