During this past week, my collaborating teacher and I re-designed our template for planning lessons and it has worked out amazingly well. I really appreciate that my collaborating teacher has taken the time to plan out the various subjects with me. I really feel like a key part of the classroom because the amount of co-teaching between my collaborating teacher and I has increased dramatically. Now I feel like I have a better understanding of what is going on in the classroom and why we teach the lessons the way we do.
This was the old plan style. I did not like writing my plans into it because there was little space and it was overwhelming to look at the entire week at a glance. I still use this plan book; however, I write my plans into it after I use the new template. This allows me to analyze the key portions of the lesson plans and write them down in a shorter, smaller format.
Above are pictures of the new lesson planning format that we use. I really like this format because I feel like I have plenty of space to write and I can look at one subject for the entire week instead of everything for the week all at once.
The plans may look a bit jumbled but I really like that I can add lots of details to my planning. This allows me to write in key questions to ask or differentiation or key strategies to use. I keep all of these plans in a binder that I can access easily at all times and it is divided by weeks.
I was very excited during this past week because I was able to step-in and participate in more co-teaching with my collaborating teacher. In the past, I typically participate in “One Teach, One Support” in which I provide some additional help to my collaborating teacher but by planning together, I have been able to work on “Team Teaching” with my collaborating teacher. I hope to continue this trend so I can continue to learn and grow as a future educator.
When planning last week, my collaborating teacher and I also decided that I would start working with a Guided Reading group and a Response to Intervention (RTI) group for mathematics. I will be working with the enrichment group for guided reading. Because I have little experience with guided reading, my collaborating teacher will be helping me a lot with the plans for this group. I really appreciate this help and I think it will be great for me to examine her model to determine what I should and need to do to meet the needs of my students.
For my RTI group, I am working with some students who need a bit of additional help in order to be really successful in mathematics. My collaborating teacher and I chose this group of students based on test scores from their Unit 1 test. This allows me to meet FEAPs 3H: “Differentiate instruction based on assessment of student learning needs and recognition of individual differences in students.” After we analyzed all of the tests, we sent them home to parents to be signed with a note that informed them of a passing grade (70%) on the exam. By doing this, I am working on meeting FEAPs 4E: “Shares the importance and outcomes of student assessment data with the student and the students’ parent/caregiver(s).” I hope to continue working on this FEAP so that I will be prepared for Parents- Teacher Conference Night at the end of the month.
I spent the past week working on determining when to add and when to subtract. On the first day, my group (four students) were distracted and had a tough time with the content but by the third day, my students were excited and eager to learn. Three out of my four students excelled at the exit ticket and I believe they have a much better understanding of this mathematics concept. I believe that by giving students exit tickets every day, I was able to monitor their progress and growth, which allowed me to meet FEAPs 1D: “Selects appropriate formative assessments to monitor learning.”
On Monday of next week, we will have our Unit 2 test and my collaborating teacher and I will determine which students I need to work with and what we need to focus on. By using both summative and formative assessments to monitor student learning, I am able to meet FEAPs 4C: “Uses a variety of assessment tools to monitor student progress, achievement, and learning gains.”
During this past week, I have created Prezis to integrate technology into the classroom as I teach Social Studies. I have integrated online resources into my Prezi such as Myon books as well. By doing this, I have met FEAP 2G: “Integrates current information and communication technologies.” Due to the collaborative nature of Prezi, all of my presentations are available online for others to use. This week, I continue to teach about individuals from history who showed honesty, courage, and responsibility as based on the standard SS.1.A.2.4 “Identify people from the past who have shown character ideals and principles including honesty, courage, and responsibility.” I was able to meet FEAPs 1A: “Aligns instruction with state-adopted standards at the appropriate level of rigor.”
This week, I wanted to include a variety of individuals for my students to learn about. Below are links to the Prezis for each person that I taught in order:
- George Washington: http://prezi.com/9zacr7z3ndzc/?utm_campaign=share&utm_medium=copy&rc=ex0share
- Harriet Tubman: http://prezi.com/jcpx6qcymf6l/?utm_campaign=share&utm_medium=copy&rc=ex0share
- Hilary Clinton: http://prezi.com/tl4vzmkomrgr/?utm_campaign=share&utm_medium=copy&rc=ex0share
I included at least on Myon book for each lesson so my students could read and listen to the biographies of each individual. I also used Brainpopjr for some of the Prezis. Then I had the students discuss what character traits each individual had and why through turn-and-talks. The students seemed to enjoy the technology and I was able to walk around more because I used the Mimio so I did not have to wait around by the computer to change slides.
I was really happy to easily integrate this technology into my lessons. I had a little bit of trouble; however, because during my Harriet Tubman lesson, the Brainpopjr video did not work, so I simply had the students learn about Harriet Tubman from the Myon book and from their textbooks. By planning ahead and familiarizing myself with their Social Studies textbook, I was able to easily and quickly modify the lesson when I had problems with the technology.
During this past week, I was observed by the Mathematics content coach. She came in to watch me and my collaborating teacher co-teach (through team teaching) doubles. Below is the email I received from her after the lesson.
The lesson that we co-taught was about Doubles. Students looked at pictures of insects and counted their legs to write a doubles fact and then the class used Part-Part-Whole mats to answer word problems. I believe that the lesson went very well because most students seemed to grasp the concept. At the end of the lesson, the students answered an exit ticket. Out of 17 students, 14 were able to correctly solve the word problem. The students had to draw a model, fill in a Part-Part-Whole mat, and write an addition sentence. The correct answer was 7+7=14, three students wrote: 7+7=16, 7+7=18, and 7+7=14. I think the students had difficulties adding the numbers together because they are used to using smaller numbers. My collaborating teacher and I both want our students to become more familiar with numbers less than twenty so we are emphasizing their use in mathematics.
I will use this information to plan out future small group lessons. On Monday, my students will be taking the mathematics Unit 2 test and I will analyze that data and this data with my collaborating teacher to determine which students need additional support in doubles and doubles plus one.
I think that the challenge is a great idea for a math center that we could implement next week. My collaborating teacher and I have already asked many questions about whether or not an addition sentence is a doubles fact and most students respond correctly. I think a Doubles Detective worksheet would be a great game for students to play to help reinforce doubles facts and doubles plus one.
I am so glad that I have the opportunity to sit down and plan out lessons with my collaborating teacher. I really love our new planning template and I am excited to use it in the upcoming weeks. Next week, I will be teaching the students about primary sources in Social Studies, we will learn about Making a Ten and Adding Three Numbers in Mathematics, in Science, we will learn about Pushes and Pulls, and in Reading we will learn more about informational texts. Next week will also be the first week that I implement a lesson plan based on USF’s lesson plan template. I am a bit nervous but also excited because this will be my first time really analyzing and teaching Science.