Frequent readers know I am teaching fifth grade challenge this year. (This is what our district calls the highly capable or gifted program.)
My students ask questions...many, many questions. To save time, I have organized my answers into four categories:
1. The quick answer. These are questions I have already thought about and know the answer.
2. Let me think about it. I make it clear that if you argue with me about this, the answer becomes a permanent "No."
3. Let's try something and see what happens. Of the possible answer, this one is risky. Something bad might happen and the students may not want me to change course.
4. Out of my jurisdiction. Some decisions are outside of my ability to control. We all have to live with that.
I realized this week that I attempt to give as many "yes" answers as possible. When I am consistent with my answers, students can predict accurately what they already have permission to do.