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Teacher Work Sample- EDUC 429

Stephanie Nicole Todd

I. Contextual Factors
a. Classroom Factors
In Ms. Cantrells fourth grade classroom, there are a number of factors that help
with and promote the students learning. The setup of the classroom is very
organized and functional for the students and the teacher. When you walk in the
door of the classroom, there is a warm, comfortable feeling. The room is
decorated with posters that have been handwritten by Ms. Cantrell. These posters
have been used for instruction previously in the school year. These posters
include topics such as theme, predictions, Stop and Jot, and visualization. The
students desks are arranged into five groups. Four of these groups have five
desks, while one of the groups has four desks. Ms. Cantrell does not have a real
desk. She has some items on a counter with the computers, but she spends her
time walking around the classroom and sitting with the students. Inside the door
and to the left, there is a counter that has three computers and Ms. Cantrells
items. There is another counter on the next wall that keeps items such as
containers, art supplies, and projects. There are two bookshelves in this
classroom that contain books for the different reading levels. The books are
organized in containers according to their level, and each level is color coded.
For example, books that are levels 24-34 have a green tag and 38-48 have a
yellow tag. This classroom contains a Smart Board and an iPad for the students
and teacher to use. Since the students are visual learners, Ms. Cantrell projects a
lot of the material on the Smart Board so the students can view it. In front of the
Smart Board, there is a carpet for the students to sit on. When Ms. Cantrell is
projecting something on the Smart Board, she allows them to move to the carpet
so they can see the board more clearly.
Ms. Cantrell has a few parents that volunteer in the classroom. Whenever Ms.
Cantrell needs any volunteers, she can call or email the parents and they help out.
Some of the parents are unable to help due to work schedules and other
responsibilities. The parents of the students in this classroom are very reliable
when it comes to signing graded papers and helping with homework. Ms. Cantrell
sends home monthly parent letters to keep the parents up to date with the
happenings in the classroom. She also sends home a major parent letter at the
beginning of the year to introduce herself to the parents and tell them about what
she has in store for the school year.
The flow of the daily routine in this classroom works well with the students.
They all seem to transition very well from subject to subject. From 8:00 to 9:00,
the students go to related arts. From 9:00 to 9:20, the students copy down their
homework assignments, while Ms. Cantrell walks around to check the previous
days homework. When they are finished copying down their homework in their
planners, the students find a partner and practice flashcards to help them study
their root words. From 9:20 to 10:20, the class works on reading. During this
time, they read independently, work on projects, read as a class, etc. From 10:20
to 11:00, the class works on social studies. From 11:00 to 11:50, the class does
writing. At 11:50, this group of students leaves and goes to math and science.
Another group of students comes in at this point. From 11:50 to 12:40, they do
reading, just as the class before. At 12:40 until 1:05, the class goes to lunch.
From 1:05 to 1:20, the class finishes reading. From 1:20 to 2:00, the class focuses
on social studies. At 2:00 until 2:20, the class goes to recess. After recess, the
students gather their items and get ready for dismissal.
b. Student Characteristics
In Ms. Cantrells fourth grade class, there are twenty-five students, consisting of
twelve boys and thirteen girls, ranging from nine to ten years of age. Of the
twelve boys, there are four African Americans, seven Caucasians, and one
Hispanic. Of the thirteen girls, there are three African Americans, eight
Caucasians, and two Hispanics. The Hispanic students speak English very well,
but they all speak Spanish in their homes.
In this classroom, there are three ESOL students, one resource student, two
extended resource students, and four students who are pulled out for speech
management. The three ESOL students, three resource students, and four students
who receive help with speech all have IEP plans. There are not any students who
have 504 plans in this classroom. The achievement levels vary in this classroom,
with Reading MAP scores ranging from 172-228 and Math MAP scores ranging
from 182-223. In reading, there are six students who read below grade level, ten
are on grade level, and nine are above grade level. In math, the numbers are the
same, but the students differ as far as being below, above, or on grade level.
There are nine GATA students in this classroom.
The students in this class learn well with more than one learning style. They gain
knowledge better with visual, auditory, and kinesthetic opportunities. The
students are very interested in technology with their learning. The students in this
classroom are interested in sports and animals. The girls seem to be interested
most in reading, art, and animals, while the boys are interested in sports and video
c. Instructional Implications
When I am planning my lessons, I will be sure to include visuals for the students.
These visuals may include charts, posters, PowerPoints, or videos. I will also
plan activities for the students to work hands-on because they learn well with
kinesthetic opportunities. I can plan activities where the students are able to
create things or do arts and crafts by integrating subject matter. This will also be
a great idea because the students are interested in art. I will also try to incorporate
sports and animals in my lessons because the students are very interested in these
two things. Therefore, they will be interested in the lesson and benefit from it
because they will be learning with something they are interested in. I will plan
group activities because I have observed the students working well with one
If I plan a lesson with a read aloud, I will choose a book on grade level for the
benefit of the resource and ESOL students. They will be provided a copy to hold
if needed. When we are working on the Smart Board, I will allow the students to
sit on the carpet in front of the classroom so they can see the board clearly.