At which grade is Show and Tell obsolete?

Question:I am a school teacher and I am having trouble justifying wasting a half hour to an hour each week on show and tell. I would like to hear comments on the pros and cons of Show and Tell. I teach First Grade at an elite private school.

Answers:
I didn't have show and tell in first grade. We had journals instead, where we could write about how we were feeling and what we were doing at home. I think journals are developmentally appropriate, because it helps 1st-graders with emerging writing skills. You could allow them to share their journals in small groups, or pick a few kids every week to talk about them so they all get a turn.
Introduces students to public speaking at a young age. The more comfortable they are in front of a classroom early on, the easier it is for them to adjust at older ages.

Do it once a month instead - but make it more of a "project" with a history of the object, maybe some minor writing involved.
they are never obsolete. they teach the children social skills, how to listen, respect, differeneces in others, tolerance, speach skills, it's a great way for the child to also feel important and that they are contributing to class, especially in the first grade. i teach 7th graders who LOVE show and tell
first grade is the last year because they are growing up, this doesn't mean you can't throw in a special day every now and then. Change it to a learning experience, say you are teaching science tell the kids to bring a favorite mammal, reptile, etc. you get the point. remember they are growing up but they are still kids. use this time to educate not a space filler. Be creative and make learning fun.
Show and tell is still very important at the first grade level. It enforces several NYS standards for ELA including speaking and listening for information and understanding. (I'm sure the standards are similar in what ever state you are in). You should have no problem justifying a half hour spent each week as long as you can tie it in with the learning standards.

It also helps to build a caring classroom community where children learn to take turns speaking and ask questions about each other's interests.

The cons to show and tell usually occur in poorer schools where the students may not have anything to bring in to share with the class. This could lead to some students feeling inadequate or jealous of his or her classmates. This should not be a problem for you since you teach in an elite private school.

I'd say show and tell looses its effectiveness after 2nd grade, but remember that each group of students is different. You may need to make show and tell a half-year event if the students aren't getting anything out of it.
I'm a resource teacher, but the 2nd grade teacher I see using S/T does this: the student must have 3 statements about the item or story (remember, it can be "tell"). The student then calls on 3 students for questions, & they must be questions, not statements. If a student says a statement instead of a question, that is discussed briefly right then, what makes it a statement & maybe how it could be changed to a question. 2nd graders still need practice with question vs. statement. So they get practice on speaking, listening, and grammar skills.
we still had show and tell in 2nd grade to build our skills. our teacher had a list of questions we had to answer when we were talking. "where did you get it?" "why did you bring it?" etc. and we went over them before we talked about our objects.
Show and Tell is valuable for giving the children practice in speaking in front of a group, but the students needs some guidance so that it doesn't become Show-Off and Tell, just seeing who has the best or most expensive toy.
* Can you tie the Show and Tell into an academic theme? You know, bring something that represents Italy or has to do with music or is related to amphibians (hmmm, maybe not THAT one!)--whatever you are studying that week.
* Post and send home a schedule, giving each child plenty of time to prepare. Attach a rubric, if that's common in your school.
* Do the first Show and Tell yourself to model your expectations. Give the children a copy of your rubric and let them "grade" your Show and Tell.
I'd actually say that SOME version of it is appropriate all the way through high school (but obviously not called 'Show and Tell').

However, I think it needs to be taken away from the "toy" category and you need to set some guidelines of what you want them to bring.

Try making categories and have them find something to fit that category to bring. For example, if you are doing something on different cultures, have them try and find something around their home or in a magazine, etc. on a different culture and bring it to discuss. I really do think first graders are capable of this if done right ... they're pretty smart little kids!

Up to the high school level, I would see it more on the lines of "We are studying Spain in geography class. Each one of you needs to go out and find something that represents Spain to you and tell us why."

I think that "Show and Tell" can connect lessons to what kids see in the real world.

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