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NCTE Position Statement

Resolution on Supporting School-Time Planning Periods for Elementary Teachers

1972 NCTE Annual Business Meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota

Background

At one time the primary and the elementary school teacher could expect to spend much of the school day teaching a class of 35 children from a limited assortment of texts delivered on the first day of school. Now the superior elementary school teacher must find time to prepare relevant materials for small groups and individual learners rather than a whole class; select appropriate media such as films, filmstrips, tapes, study prints, for several different subjects; be aware of new books and new editions of old books; be aware of the best commercially prepared materials; know how to use a camera with the class; print, develop, and enlarge film, select realia for special interest groups; plan meaningful field trips that enhance the instructional program; find time to talk to parents and to each child on a regular basis; and know each child's learning style. Neither the time before school or at the end of the day, nor the time the teacher steals with a guilty conscience from art, music, physical education, or the library period is adequate for this preparation. Time for thoughtful curriculum planning is not presently available to the teacher who must help each school child savor and foster his or her own learning. Be it therefore

Resolution

Resolved, that the National Council of Teachers of English, through publications and policy statements, support the primary and elementary school teachers in their negotiations with school boards for a daily planning period within the period of time the children are in school.

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