Marshall County Schools teachers are taking learning to a new – active – level

GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. -- Several Marshall County Schools teachers are taking instruction to a new level.

At Douglas Middle School, one classroom is filled with empty desks. The students are standing around the room. "Alright let's do this," said math teacher Chris Williams, "We're going to do one more scenario."

He directed the kids into groups. As the students got into position, Williams gave them a fraction math problem to solve using themselves to solve it.  Each group was different.

It's part of a new teaching method incorporated system-wide in the middle and high schools. "It's student based learning, where they're learning to problem solve on their own," Williams explained.

That instruction method gets kids involved using real world projects, coupled with books and pencils. "The teachers are able to, rather than demonstrate how to do a project, the students are challenged to create and figure things out on their own," explained Superintendent Cindy Wigley, "So the teacher becomes more of a facilitator."

The learning method is incorporated in middle and high school math, science, and literature classes. "The number one thing at the beginning of the year was to get them out of their comfort zone, and their comfort zone being 'I'm just going to sit and let the teacher teach and I'm going to listen and if I don't get it I'm just going to let that slide,'" explained Williams.

Using the new method, the students are actively engaged. "The students will be able to think critically, and work together as a team, and communicate," Wigley said.

She added that prepares them for what's ahead.

ACT scores are up from last year in every area in Marshall County Schools. School leaders believe this teaching method will bring those scores to the next level.