Field Experience: First Lesson

I am teaching in a grade eight classroom. For my first lesson I taught the students how to make their writing more descriptive. The students are already working on a historical fiction writing project, so I taught them about the five senses and how to incorporate descriptive words that appeal to the different senses into their writing. I was able to get the students to respond to parts of my lesson and they seemed interested. I also asked them to add descriptive sensory words to a boring paragraph and hand it in as an exit slip. From the paragraphs it seems like the students understood what I taught them.

The timing didn’t go quite as planned, so I will have to continue practicing time management skills. I wasn’t loud or assertive enough and I didn’t feel as if my lesson did everything I wanted it to. I was hoping I could get students to rewrite their open paragraphs using what I taught them, but because my instructions weren’t explicit enough they just continued adding on to their writing.

I would have kept better track of time so that I knew I was on point, because when you’re in front of the class it can be hard to gauge how much time has passed. I would also be louder and more explicit in my instructions. Perhaps using tangible objects instead of a slide show would bring the ideas home more too.

This week I learned that I would like to be a teacher that has a more of a collaborative relationship with my students rather than being the kingpin (or queenpin?) of the classroom. But I think that this relationship will still require me to be more assertive than I am. I also think could classroom management will be the key to keeping such a classroom environment functional.

My preferred classroom community is different than my co-op teachers (although the classroom functions amazingly because she is the boss). Do you think the kind of community you have is effected by the grade you’re teaching? Or do you think it discounts children to think that they are too immature for certain types of classroom communities?

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