A Descriptive Study of Loopers in Four Schools


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Virginia Tech


The concerns society has expressed regarding the education of children have prompted educators to relentlessly search for instructional methodologies and organizational designs to maximize student achievement. One instructional organizational design that has surfaced is looping. Looping is the process wherein the teacher remains with the same group of children for a period of two or more years. Looping has been tried at all grade levels with a single teacher or with a team of teachers and with the same students over a period of years. The purpose of this study is to investigate the implementation of looping in four schools and to provide a descriptive account. A case study approach was used. Teachers and principals at four elementary schools using looping were interviewed regarding their experience. Data were analyzed using a qualitative approach for emerging themes.

These findings indicated that schools implement the looping concept to build relationships, for instructional advantages, extended time and to lessen anxieties. Also, schools implemented the looping concept by doing an indepth study of the concept and by allowing teachers and parents to participate voluntarily. Finally, specific outcomes as a result of the implementation of looping were as follows: parents were knowledgeable about school functions and the overall program of studies; students had a safe haven; and teachers felt that looping gave them more time with their students.



twenty month classrooms, continuous progress, looping, multiyear