Sunday, December 12, 2010
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Monday, November 22, 2010
Sunday, November 14, 2010
.........at least I have a start for this weeks posts.......
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
I find that it is incredibly difficult (although not impossible) to incorporate student discovery if it’s on the first day where a new unit has started. In a class like precalculus, when a new unit is introduced, there is a lot of information that needs to be given to students in order for them to proceed with each subsequent section of the unit. For example, before a student can do transformation to trig expressions they mush know trig identities and these identities or properties are given. I can see how we can let students explore the discovery of the Pythagorean expression by drawing a right triangle on a coordinate grid but this is mostly, these properties are given. Within a time constraint, it would be difficult to have students discover all the properties themselves. Whether or not students memorize the properties or discover their applications, it seems that just as long as they are able to recall this information is what counts (merely a statement based on observation and not an opinion).
Usually you will have a lesson prepared prior to actually teaching the class but throughout the day you make changes to your lesson plan as you discover what works well and what doesn’t in class. As you make these amendments, you apply these changes to your future classes and at the end of the day you have a lesson plan that can be used for next year. If we take these lesson plans at the end of the day and put them in a binder, we would have a complete set of lessons already prepared to use for next year! (minding that adaptations will be made contingent on the skill level of each class-since that changes every year as well.)
Monday, November 1, 2010
While creating my lesson plans, I had to incorporate a lot of equations. I had to insert the object ‘Equation Editor’ and then once I click out of the highlighted area, the window for Equation Editor disappears. Then if I had to use it again, I would have to go to the task bar and insert an object again. This would not be as time consuming if I only had to use this function once but I was constantly using the Equation Editor and therefore would have liked to have the window open all the time. On one of the computers, this ability is available but unfortunately the one I’m on does not-until yesterday that is! We had a worksheet creator installed on the computer where I’m located that has the equation editor loaded on it, so now I am able to use the Equation Editor as a separate window! Fantastic! Then I went home to check that I have this capability on my Mac because again I was just inserting the equation editor as an object. Fortunately, Equation Editor on my Mac can be opened as a separate window by finding it under my applications! YAY!
When I was creating my first lesson that will be observed, I realized how difficult it was to find the standards that my lesson will align with. I asked my cooperating teacher what standards he looks at when preparing for his lessons for PreCalculus and he stated that there are no true standards exactly outlined for PreCalculus. So I took my dilemma to class to make my inquiry there and I was given the same answer. What I have to do is pick out different standards outlined from other subjects (like algebra) and the general math standards and see what in my lesson covers those standards. It makes it more difficult for me to pinpoint exactly what standards I am trying to address in class, unlike Algebra where the standards being addressed are specifically stated.
I went into a classroom where the teacher has a microphone that she wears around her neck and at the back of the class are the speakers (which I may add has great sound quality). This was provided to her from the school because of vocal difficulties she has but I thought it was a great idea for those who cannot seem to project their voices (such as I). It just feels like I’m yelling when I try to project my voice although, since I cannot hear myself from the back of the classroom so I cannot confirm if my “yelling voice” is necessary. I asked input from my CT regarding my teaching voice and there has been a few times where my volume had to be turned up but otherwise I am acclimating myself to the volume I need. I just feel that having a microphone is so official! =)
My cooperating teacher an I have developed a plan that I would start working with students during their PAWs break on their math assignments. I wanted to present some of them the opportunity to raise their grades up in math class, but initially I was thinking of providing them extra work that they can get points on to boost their grades. When it was decided that there would be no extra points awarded, I felt that I lost my “hook” to lure the kids into taking the time to work with me so I was a little bit hesitant in offering help to these students if they felt that they will no receive immediate rewards. However, when I approached the students, I asked them how they felt about their grade in math at the moment and when they responded that they are doing poorly, I asked them if they would like the opportunity to do better and they gladly agreed. I merely told them that I want to help them raise their grade by offering my time and assistance when they needed it. I think that they are really willing to work with me or their response was to merely get my out of their face. We shall see…
That feeling of being completely exhausted engulfed me on Friday. One would think that creating lessons and mentally and physically preparing for class would not be so difficult but ohhhh noo, it does wear one out. I think that the well-rested, casual and fluent demeanor that many experienced teachers carry so well can only come with time and practice-something that I am only starting to do. Also planning for my after school tutoring sessions also takes a toll on my time but I think it wouldn’t be as bad if the content aligned itself to the content I am teaching in school..but no, I have to prepare chemistry lessons after class while teaching math in school. =)
I realize now how long it takes to make an electronic version of a group test. The original test was handwritten, and although it was very functional as-is, I thought it would be beneficial for my cooperating teacher to have a test stored electronically where the document can be easily edited without having to rewrite the entire test. Also, I really wanted to test out my new graph-making skills and what better way to do it than for a group test. Although the conversion was a much longer process than I anticipated-it was well worth the time.
Saturday, October 16, 2010
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Thursday, October 7, 2010
What this instructor does is have all her lessons prepared ahead of time and writes on her slides while in front of the class. But as she is up there it's like she has a magic wand and she can flip through pages, add shapes, write in different colors and highlight when necessary. Today I had the privilege of seeing the use of E-clickers (not sure if that is the correct terminology) but it was used today as a tool for formative assessment. Problems were given on the board and students has to submit their answers, A, B, or C using the E-clickers. By using these E-clickers, the teacher was able to get a better understanding of the level of understanding that students in each class has on the current lesson.
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
The second student I observed has quite the opposite demeanor than Esteban. ChiChi hardly pays attention during class, in fact she talks quite a bit even during lectures. She writes down everything written on the board but hardly maintains eye contact with the instructor. When she asks for help, she needs to be led and she continues to have repeating questions. She makes conversation with the people around her and heckles other students who are across the room. I can't be certian that ChiChi has not learned anything in the class because I have seen her complete some of her assignments and also help her friend with some of the material presented in class however, her quiz scores reflect otherwise. If she is not chatting, I see her eyes wondering through out the room. I feel that she has the ability to complete all the assignments however, it appears that she may lack enthusiasm or motivation for the subject. (This is not an observation, merely an opinion in this case.)
Thursday, September 9, 2010
My cooperating teacher did so kindly introduced me as the student intern to all his classes made them aware that I would be teaching some of the classes later on. I really do appreciate this introduction, my only fear is that students won't ask me for help because "it's not my turn" to be teacher but that is why I declare that tomorrow I will be a little bit more assertive in my intern role. It's not my cooperating teacher's responsibility to tell me what to do in class but to guide me and he is very willing and open to the suggestions that I have, it is my own assertiveness that I need to check.
Today I will continue to take very detailed notes, but I think as the day progresses I will have to put the pen down and start moving around the classroom because I'm really getting tired of writing. Tomorrow we have planned for me to take attendance to help me start memorizing the students' names and I'm excited!