Archive for the ‘E. Standard 3’ Category

Standard 3.G

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2008

“Embrace teaching through appropriate and creative activities utilizing instructional techniques that are

supported by current research.”

 

Reading utilizes both sides of the brain, because in the action of spanning a page, the brain is forced to use both sides to see all of the words. Stretches and physical activities that force both sides to function at the same time (crossing the midline of the body) help readers to better understand the text that they are reading, and boost reading comprehension. During my student teaching, my mentor teacher encouraged me to continue with yoga stretches that she had done with her classes. At the beginning of each of our class periods, we would start with some basic stretching that got students moving and helped the two sides of their brains to interact.

 

When reading journals, quizzes, and other assessments, I noticed that many students remembered very minute details of certain class discussions. Points that I had made even as side-points were often brought up again during assessments. While I do not have a control group with which to compare these results, I was very satisfied with the amount of information that students retained throughout our units.

 

In the future, I would definitely continue with physical activities and stretches at the beginning of my class hours. This is a gentle way for teachers to gain student attentiveness at the beginning of class (through students following the teacher, who is leading the stretches), gives students somewhat of a physical break from sitting all day, and prepares students to be able to remember the readings and discussion.

 

Artifact:

Observation form that praises yoga stretches

Standard 3.B

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2008

“Create learning environments that promote critical and higher order thinking skills, foster the acquisition of deep knowledge, and provide connections beyond the classrooms to promote substantive conversation and clear structured writing among teachers and learners regarding subject matter acquisition.”

 

As a college student transitioning from student to teacher, I found it difficult at the beginning of my teaching to think in the “high school” mindset. In brainstorming discussion questions, I immediately found myself trying to dig deep into literary analysis, like we had in my collegiate literature courses. I had to remind myself that most of my students were not cognitively prepared to immediately jump into deep discussion. However, instead of refraining these questions altogether, I realized that I would have to work with students in order to get them to the point of being able to analyze literature.

 

During our short story mini-unit, toward the beginning of the marking period, I created 3-level reading guides for students to fill out after reading each short story. These guides started with literal questions: answers to which can directly be found in the literature. From there, the worksheets asked interpretive questions (asking students to make their own inferences about certain aspects of the piece) and applied questions (asking students to apply themes from the piece to their lives). After reading these worksheets, I saw that many students were able to make some deep connections to the literature. Had I asked interpretive and applied questions right off the bat, I do not think that students would have been able to make as deep of connections.

 

For our assessment for the Inherit the Wind unit, I asked students to do a take-home quiz, for which they needed to answer three of four questions. These questions were thematic in nature, and helped to tie together some of the discussions we had had in class over the unit. By this point in the semester, students had participated in numerous analytical discussions, as well as written persuasive papers, and so I felt as though they were ready to dive into their own literary analysis. The quizzes turned out really well, and I discovered that many students were able to come up with analyses that I had not thought of yet! I would definitely do such an assignment in the future, although I would realize in assigning it that 10th graders would need several days of out-of-class time to complete the assignment.

 

As a whole, I think that it is vital that teachers ask deep, meaningful questions of their students, and that expectations for comprehensive learning should be set high. However, we as teachers need to provide students with the tools and positive feedback to be able to meet these expectations.

 

Artifacts:

          3-level reading guides:

Hair” worksheet

“It Can’t Be Helped” worksheet

“Through the Tunnel” worksheet

“Typhoid Fever” worksheet

 

          Inherit the Wind take-home quiz

Standard 3

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2008

Curricular and Pedagogical Content Knowledge Aligned with State Resources

“Knowledge of subject matter and pedagogy with reference to the MCF and other state sponsored resources, for consistent and equitable learning in Michigan schools.”

 

a. Design and implement instruction aligned with the MCF, Universal Education Vision and Principles, and the Michigan Educational Technology Standards

 

Throughout my time with the Education department, I have planned and taught lessons framed around Curriculum Standards.

 

I have used technology as a supplement to many of my lessons during student teaching.

 

 

b. Create learning environments that promote critical and higher order thinking skills, foster the acquisition of deep knowledge, and provide connections beyond the classrooms to promote substantive conversation and clear structured writing among teachers and learners regarding subject matter acquisition*

 

During my student teaching, I challenged students to critically think about literature and social topics, through journal-writing, discussion, and peer-to-peer interaction. I tried to provide “real-life” connections to in-class topics in order for students to connect themes to their own lives and current society.

 

 

c. Help each student to learn how to safely and responsibly access and use resources to become a discerning independent learner and problem solver (e.g., print materials, information technology, assistive technology)

 

During our research project for Maymester, I provided students with outlined information to find on their specific athlete and athlete’s country, and provided several “starting points” in order to access reliable, safe information on the Internet; also, I provided supplemental print materials to help students find the information they needed.

 

 

d. Design instruction so that students are engaged in actively integrating and transferring knowledge across the curriculum

 

The curriculum that I taught during student teaching is framed by driving questions that mesh together for overall cohesiveness and clarity—progression of curriculum throughout semester helps students to draw their perspective first from themselves, then further outward.

 

The unit plan that I designed and taught for Maymester (Boundary Crossing) social studies, science, and current issues.

 

 

e. Engage students in activities that demonstrate the purpose and function of subject matter to make connections to the world beyond the classroom and enhance the relationship and relevance to a global society

 

The unit that I designed and taught during Maymester helped each student to connect to a specific individual in another country, as well as to make an overall connection to the global issues relating to the environment.

 

The action research that I worked on during my student teaching (“Combating racist attitudes in the classroom”)—focused on social learning and encouraging students to expand their viewpoints beyond what only they have experienced.

 

 

f. Evaluate, adapt, and modify instructional strategies, technologies, and other educational resources to enhance the learning of each student

 

During my student teaching, I provided supplemental materials for students to help them organize information and projected certain supplemental material on the board.

 

 

g. Embrace teaching through appropriate and creative activities utilizing instructional techniques that are supported by current research*

 

At the beginning of each hour while I was student teaching, we started with yoga/stretching, which stimulates the crossing of the midline in the brain and helps students with reading comprehension and memory.