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Multiage Classroom Information

Why Multiage?

  • Allows for flexibility in the grouping of children according to need, ability, or interest; not just by age.
  • Problems associated with a yearly transition from one grade to another can be overcome.
  • The teacher has a nucleus of children, trained in the details of the class organization who keep it going while newcomers absorb it.
  • As the student-teacher-parent relationship develops over a longer period of time, students will receive greater support for their success in school.
  • A more natural learning situation is established.  Children work at their own pace.  Their program is not geared to the work of a single year but can be adjusted over two or more years. 
  • Benefits come to the older children from the quality of leadership and responsibility they develop.  Research shows that when older students teach information and skills to their younger classmates, their academic perormance, and even IQ scores, dramatically improve.  The research of Arthur Whimbey (in his program T.A.P.S: Talking About Problem Solving) showed that when students were routinely given the opportunity to teach someone else, their scores on IQ assessments improved as much as eighteen points.  In another study done in the 1960s, underachieving high shcool students who acted as reading tutors for younger students, improved their reading scores by an equivalent of two years, in just six months' time.  (From the Nov. 1994 edition of Educational Leadership, p. 58.)
  • Young children are stimulated intellectually by older children.  Children have a broader social experience with increased opportunities to lead and to follow, to collaborate and to make stable peer relationships.
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