Over the four schools and nine demonstration lessons I have visited (and given) in the last three days, something has become curiously apparent. The Shoebox content and methodology can suit children who learn differently, who see the world through different eyes. We are all familiar with these children and the particular methodological requirements they place on our teaching practices.
At two of these schools, I was advised by the principals and teachers that I would have five such students in two of the classrooms, and I was delighted that I was only able to spot one of them. Why? Because the other four found the colour-coding of Shoebox and the hands-on methodology so clear that they engaged fully and in fact, actually did better than some of the other students! Both teachers and principals were amazed and delighted.
While Shoebox was never designed or intended as a methodological tool for such students, it appears to work. I don't have the research background to understand the learning processes here, but perhaps the colour coding, sequencing and clear structure make it easier for students who learn with their eyes and hands rather than with pencil on paper.
Oh. I should point out that other students enjoyed it as well, and I was tickled pink when a Year Two boy described the lesson as 'breathtaking!' His teachers should be delighted for his vocabulary alone!