Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Session Two- Week Three

"Lesson Description"
-The objective of this lesson is to enlighten the students on the Worldwide phenomenon that was the depression during the 1929 and the 1930s.  I will have the terms to know on the board when they walk into class.  To begin class I am going to give the students the terms on a sheet of paper.  I will ask them to complete wha tthey can without looking at their book.  I don't expect the students to be able to fill out too much of this "quiz."  The reasoning for this will come later.  Before I do anything else I am going to give the students the current situation in the world (post World War I).  After that I am going to assign students certain segments of the section.  I am going to show the students how to skim and scan and then have them do the same for their segments.  I will give them time to read it then ask them to summarize it in one sentence.  The ability to grasp important information from reading as well as to compact it is valuable in numerous professions as well as later on in school.  After that I will continue explaining the rest of the section.  Once I have reached the end of the section I will hand back out the original "quiz."  This will show the students and myself what they have learned from this lesson.

"Strategy Descriptions"
graphic organizer- visual aids used to arrange generated information in an orderly manner.
reciprocal reading- it is a set of four strategies taught to struggling readers, primarily to develop their comprehension monitoring abilities.  In pairs or small groups, participants sharing a common text take turns assuming the roles of teacher and studen.
varied homework- diversify the types of assessment and homework that is given to the students. (couldn't really find an answer online)
reading workshops- students participate in three broad areas: a mini-lesson conducted by the teacher, activity time, and sharing time.  In the workshop strategy, students hold most of the decision-making power regarding material to be read or written, and responses to that reading or writing.

Scenario 3:
I would recommend that Mr. C. give his students another shot at the project.  If the majority of his students were unsuccessful then I can assume that they did not fully understand the assignment.  He should attempt to explain the assignment another way or change the project slightly (or dramatically if needed).  The goal of the project is for the students to learn something and when the majority of the students haven't something needs to be changed.
Scenario 4:
I would suspect that the students are bored with their work.  When students feel that they are just being given busy work, they are less likely to get it done.  One thing that Ms. D can do is to change up the kinds of homework that she is using.  If she gives out a worksheet every day, students will quickly become disinterested.  If she finds the first idea unsuccessful or unwilling to try, she can always think about not assigning homework.  Several teachers don't assignment homework.  By doing all of the work in class the issue of not having to turn in homework becomes irrelevant.

How Classroom Assessments Improve Learning
For the longest time teachers and administrators have been incorrectly using assessment.  The well-known national assessments that everyone focuses on on practically useless for teachers to use in a way to better their teaching.  Instead teachers need to focus on their own assessments.  For the exams and tests that teachers give, they need to test what students have already done instead of trying to fool students by putting something on that they haven't seen before, "testing what [teachers] teach."  Teachers need to use assessments as a way to understand what adjustments need to be made in order to have all students successfully achieve the desired goal.  All corrective work that is going to be done needs to be done in the classroom because students tend not to do it otherwise, it is seen as extra work.  One issue that comes up, should students who perform good work after the assessment receive the same grade as those who did so before.  They should because it might have been the teachers style of presenting the information that caused them not to understand the assignment and the goal is for the students to perform at a high level and they did.

Rich Tasks
As teachers our lessons need to do more than teach, they need to provide meaningful real world applications.  This way we as teachers able to show the students exactly why what we are teaching is relevant.  The article describes a lesson plan in which a chemistry teacher wanted to measure acid/base levels takes the students to a local river to do their study.  Also the assessment strategies need to be varied in order to best get the students to explore the material.  For the river study, the teacher had the students then right a paper in which they would suggest how to best treat the river to keep the acid/base levels healthy.  They key is having open ended exploration in which the students are pushed to answer complex questions.

Strategies That Close the Gap
The best strategies for finding how to close or eliminate the achievement gap is to look at schools that have already done so.  One important thing to do is to emphasize reading, perhaps have a reading portion of every class.  Also it is important to challenge every student.  Students who are already lower in achievement will stay there if you don't challenge them.  Students that are at-risk are likely to need reteaching of material, teachers should patient with these students.  Another key point is to also incorporate everyone into the classroom.  Make sure to involve everyone, not just the students who raise their hand.  Lastly, students need to know that you care about them, see what they think about the lessons you are teaching, and teach your lessons with some humor.

3. -it is crucial to take the time to develop lesson plans that involve teaching to all types of learners to that every student has the chance to succeed
-building relationships inside the school is important because other faculty can provide assistance and ideas
-assessments need to be used so that teachers can reflect on their teaching, go back and tweak the lesson so all students can succeed.
2. -It is important to not accept that some students are not incapable of understand the material.  After assessing the students think of ways to include every student.
-It is crucial to keep students interested, a way to do this is to vary the types of homework that is given out.
1. -Make every lesson meaningful for the students, by making lessons more meaningful for the students.  They are more likely to be interested.  A key is to show students how what they are doing actually has real-world application.  Lastly, each students needs to be pushed, that includes at-risk and lower tracked students.

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