This week Sébastien and I went to Campbell Collegiate with the kids to listen to a motivational speaker. We were there the entire morning. I think the talk was great for the students to hear, but as a pre-service teacher, I did not recognize or extract any pedagogical values within or parallels to the talk. The only thing worth noting is how the teachers decided to do crowd control over the kids. The auditorium was packed with about ten classes of grade seven and eight students, equalling between 200 and 300 students.
A few summers back I helped with VBS and us leaders were always encouraged to integrate ourselves with the kids by sitting with them. Sitting with the kids served a couple of purposes: so we were easily accessible to the kids and so we could be aware of any rowdy commotion before it got out of hand. At Campbell, all of the teachers (save two or three) all sat at the back of the auditorium where the students could be easily seen but not at all heard. I was torn. Between my training as a VBS leader and between now learning how to be a teacher, I did not know if I should sit with the kids or if I should follow the lead of my cooperating teacher and sit at the back. In the end, I decided it would be good to sit in the back in order to compare and contrast the two methods of crowd control. However, the kids were incredibly engaged with the content of the motivational speech and there were no problems with the kids.
In the end, I think I will try sitting with the kids the next time I attend an assembly or speech with them and see what is better – but perhaps all of it is situational and dependent on the specific event so none of this speculating is actually affective.