Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Writing lesson plan reflection and final thoughts

Lesson Topic: 
Writing a letter to our future teacher                                                                                              

Date Taught:  7/28/2015

What went well: 
Today I taught a lesson on writing a letter.  Many students did not know much about writing letter, and this was a skill we had not taught before during summer learning place.  Our students had previously read the book The Day the Crayons Quit during one of our other reading lessons.  So today, I just read a few letters as examples for the students.  The students really enjoy this book as it is funny, so this helped them stay engaged.  After reading the letters to the students, I asked questions to assess their prior knowledge about letters.  I was surprised to find that they did not know much about letters.  Only one student knew about greetings and closing in a letter.  Because of little prior knowledge, I modeled how to write a letter on the board.  The students wrote letters to their future teachers.  I wrote in two different colors on the board.  The students were to copy the green writing in their own letters and change the writing to their own personal thoughts and information.  Writing a letter together went better than I think it would have gone if I didn’t help them write the letter and have them copy it.

What did not go as planned:
The probing questions did not go as planned, because I assumed the students knew more than they did. 

How to change for subsequent lessons:
For future lessons, I want to look up how other teacher teach writing letters for the first time.  I think I would also give students a wider variety of letter examples.

Final Reflection on Summer Learning Place:

Summer learning place has been a great learning experience for me.  I was pleasantly surprised at how much I was able to teach my students in such a short amount of time.  I actually made my students goals too simple as they were able to learn a lot more than I expected.  I definitely learned a lot from co-teacher about cooperative learning activities.  However, I didn’t learn as many strategies for memory skills and retention as I would have liked.  I was a much more effective lesson planner than I thought I would be.  My co-teacher helped a lot with this skill as well.  I was originally nervous about teaching with someone else.  I am so glad that we were paired together, because I learned so much from my fellow classmate and teacher.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Reading Lesson Plan Reflection

 Jennifer Scarbrough             

Lesson Topic: 
Chinese New Year Reading Lesson                                                                                                 

Date Taught:  7/21/2015

What went well: 
Before I began reading, I asked my students questions about what they knew about the Chinese New Year celebration and our New Year’s Eve celebration.  They know a lot more about the Chinese New Year than I thought they would.  I showed them pictures of Chinese New Year celebrations on my computer before we started reading.  I think it really helped my students get excited about the story.  My students understood the concept of comparing and contrasting when we compared the Chinese New Year to New Year’s Eve in a Venn diagram.  They really enjoyed making the Chinese lanterns after reading the book Lanterns and Fireworks.  The students were excited to have something to take home to show their parents. 

What did not go as planned:
I wish I had showed the students pictures of our New Year’s Eve celebrations.  They did not know as much about our holiday as they did about the Chinese New year once we read the story.  Also, when we made the lanterns, I wish I had cut notches in the paper the night before.  Although, I think the kids enjoyed getting to do it themselves. 

How to change for subsequent lessons:
The next time I teach this lesson, I will also show pictures of our New Year's Eve celebrations to help activate prior knowledge.  Mrs. Hensley suggested drawing dots or lines where they are supposed to cut their lanterns.  I will definitely do that next time.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Math Lesson Reflection

Week 2:
We just finished our second week at Summer Learning Place. I have really enjoyed getting to know my students.  They each are so unique, and they are learning so much more that I thought possible in such a short time.  On Monday, I taught a math lesson for two different groups.  Group 1 was adding and subtracting with regrouping.  Group 2, who were with my coteacher, learned how to divide.  This was my first observed lesson.

Date Taught:  7/13/2015

About my lesson
My group is on two different levels.  One group can easily add with regrouping, but they do not know how to subtract with regrouping.  One student learned how to add with regrouping on Thursday, but still needs some more practice.  He will be “teaching” another student how to do this with base ten base blocks.  I will be guiding and modeling for them while I give the other students an opportunity to play with the base ten blocks. 

My other group will be learning how to subtract with regrouping.  Since this is a new concept, I will model two problems.  Then, we will work together as a group to do problems from a worksheet.  We will use the base ten blocks the whole time.

My coteacher's group worked on division for the first time.  She discussed the importance of being able to divide evenly and gave a few examples.  The students each had a sheet of paper with 2, 3 and 4 circles on it.  The students were given division problems dividing by 2, 3 or 4.  They divided beads into the circle.  

What went well: 
I think what went well was that the student learning how to add with regrouping with a peer was able to move from using the base ten blocks to not needing the manipulatives.  She was able to make a connection from the concrete to the abstract.  She has become a lot more confident in her math abilities and is starting to enjoy a subject she previously did not like.  My student learning how to subtract with regrouping was excited that he was able to do harder problems than the other students.  We have been working on boosting his confidence, and I think this lesson helped.  I did not get to see the division group in action since I was working with my group, but my coteacher said it wen well.  The students in both groups enjoyed getting to use the manipulatives and were able to understand the concepts.  I am glad that I was able to differentiate the instruction so each student could work on what he or she needed to learn. 

What did not go as planned:
In the division group, I had drawn circles on a sheet of paper.  The students divided beads into the circles.  Unfortunately, this did not go as planned.  The beads rolled around and some fell on the floor.  I can definitely make improvements so this goes better next time.

How to change for subsequent lessons:
The next time I teach division, I will use some kind of containers for the students to place the beads
 in so they will not roll around.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Beginning Feelings and goals

Hello All!

My name is Jennifer Scarbrough.  I am the case manager for four students in Class B for Summer Learning Place.  I will be teaching reading, writing, and math to all students in 2nd and 3rd grades.  I will be working with another teacher from my Practicum course.  She and I will be co-planning and co-teaching all subjects.  We begin on Tuesday, July 8th and will end on July 30th at Sevier Middle School.  Summer Learning Place will be in session from 8:30 to 11:30 every Monday through Thursday.  We have break from 9:50 to 10:05.  

Feelings about this experience:

I am looking forward to working with new students.  I am new to working with this age group.  I have been teaching high school for the past three years in a special education classroom.  I think it will be difficult to truly understand all of their strengths and weaknesses in such a short amount of time.  After speaking to my students' parents, it seems that memory and retaining skills over time are going to need to be addressed.  I am also nervous about planning lessons.  I work in a Tutorial classroom, where I work with students on what they bring to my class from the general education classroom.  My partner teacher is an Elementary school teacher, so I am hoping she can help me in this area.  I am not sure what to expect for tomorrow.  With teaching, every day brings new and exciting challenges and victories.  I am excited for what is to come.

Goals for this experience:

1.      Get better at managing time, transitions and lesson planning

2.       Learn strategies to help students with memory and retention issues

3.      Learn how to better facilitate cooperative learning activities

Teaching Experience:

·        Tutorial Teacher (Special Education-Resource Setting)- Mauldin High School, 2012-present

·         Substitute Teacher (All subjects and grade levels)- Spartanburg Districts 3 and 7, 2011-2012

·         Reading Resource Teacher (5th grade)- Carroll Middle School, 2010-2011