Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Lesson 3 reflection

For my last observation, I did a writing lesson on opinion and persuasive text.  We read another one of my favorite books, Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus and we discussed whether or not the pigeon persuaded us to let him drive the bus.  The class decided that they would not let him because he was too small, and pigeons don't drive buses.  They then went back to their seats and wrote why they would or would not let the pigeon drive the bus (their opinion).

The students here highly engaged throughout the entire lesson because they really enjoyed the book.  They even noticed how the pictures give us information about how the pigeon is feeling (inferences).  They have really learned how to have conversations with their partner and work well with one another.

Next time, I would model what my expectations were for their writing; however, lets be honest...these kids are checked out and it is difficult to get them to do a writing activity after reading a story.  many students drew pictures of the pigeon...one looked JUST like the character from the story.  I was so impressed.

I can't believe that our practicum experience is coming to an end.  I have really enjoyed hearing feedback from the parents.   A lot of my parents are extremely happy and can see the growth their students are making.  they have shared success stories and "ah ha" moments and it makes me proud of the work Jamie and I did this Summer.  I definitely met my goal of learning new skills to help further my professional career.  I can't wait to take some of the activities and I did and use them with my new children with special needs.  I have built confidence in my ability to teach diverse learners.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Lesson 2 Reflection

On Tuesday, July 21, I taught a math lesson on pictographs.  We used fruit loops to graph and answer questions about.  The kids love to use food manipulatives! 

What went well: The kids were really engaged the entire time.  They listened, sat in their chairs and desks, and answered questions.  When it was time for independent work, they got right to it.  Most students needed help reading the questions, but could answer them.  I was able to use what the students did as a direct assessment because I was able to know who could CREATE a graph and who could INTERPRET a graph, which are verbs in the essential questions.  Sometimes as teachers, it is easy to forget the purpose of the lesson and what we are looking for.  It is important to refer to the standard and essential question.

What didn't go well: Well...two students could simply not wait to get their hands on those fruit loops and as I was modeling how to make the graph, they reached and ate some of the fruit loops.  Then, I am pretty sure they ate play dough as well.  They must have been really hungry.  Other than that, the lesson was very smooth and engaging!

In the future, I will have students create bar graphs from the pictographs to push those bright little thinkers!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Lesson 1 Reflection`

On Tuesday, July 14, I taught my first observed lesson.  My lesson topic was reading and I focused on the skill cause and effect.  I used one of my favorite books, Pete the Cate, My New School Shoes.  I choose this book because it has great examples of cause and effect, it has a great message of "brushing things off", and the kids LOVE it!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                What went well:  The best part of my lesson was my students being engaged throughout the story by partner talking, singing the song, and answering questions. I think they have an understanding cause and effect!  When they sang the song from the story, it was so cute!  They also placed all the examples of cause and effect in the correct places.  I loved hearing the conversations they had during partner talk. 

What did not go as planned: A lot of my kids have trouble staying focused.  Towards the end, they got a little antsy.  Two students also are not very verbal so they did not share with their partners as I would have liked them to.  I realized that the Brain Pop video was a little too long so as soon as I saw them starting to zone out, I stopped the video and continued on with the lesson.

How to change for subsequent lessons: I would love to further the lesson and have my higher students create a book about cause and effect.  

Comments from university supervisor

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Summer Camp Expectations!

I am so excited about meeting my 8 little ones tomorrow morning.  I look forward to building positive relationships and  seeing progress throughout the next  4 weeks.  I am so thankful for this opportunity to help these children love to learn and to help them to become successful citizens.  It will be exciting to put all the skills I have learned throughout my time at Furman into practice and create experience to use in my future classrooms.  I have high expectations for myself and students and plan to hold myself to the same standards as I do my students. My goals for the next four weeks include...

1. Building positive relationships with my students and parents though meaningful conversations and learning what works best for their learning environment.
2. Creating and teaching intentional lessons that create data to share with parents and celebrate growth.
3. Growing as a teacher through reflection and conversations to gain new ideas to use in my professional career.