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Hayleigh Johnson

PSII Reflection
KSA #1 Contextual Variables KSA #8 Relationships KSA#9 Instructional Strategies KSA #16 Vision of Teaching

Three Things I Learned in PSII


1. Modelling a concept/idea/assignment is more effective to ensure that students are
processing what is being taught.
I found that it is essential to ensure that I, as a teacher, are providing clear and concise
instructions. It is important that my introduction establishes learner goals and the closing of a
lesson allows for the teacher to draw the students back to that big picture and formatively
assess understanding. I made sure that I had this strictly outlined in my lesson plan. I found,
however, that there was something missing in the body of the lesson. I needed to move
beyond just instructing my students and reminding them of what they were learning. I needed
to work with them and show them the learning process. By modelling a concept in class, I
showed my students what is was like to go through the assignment and how to approach it.
We learned together. I found that once I started to implement this strategy there was less
confusion of what was expected of them and it allowed them to reflect on how they would
approach a topic similarly or differently. There was more direction after they were able to
observe someone and building on their own ideas. For example, I brainstormed on the white
board how I would plan the project and make connections.
2. Take the time to know your students.
Building positive relationships with my students is essential to making a classroom run more
smoothly. I am building trust with my students and showing that I look forward to seeing
them every day. I am establishing a positive classroom environment. I found that with my
Reader Response Journal, students were able to be more honest with me as the journal
provided them with an opportunity to free write. The first day that I was with my students I
introduced myself. I wanted to become a person that they could connect with from the start. I
talked about my likes, dislikes, where I went to school, why I chose teaching etc. I then set
up my three expectations that I had for them: Try your best, be honest and listen and respect
others while they are talking. I then asked my students for their first entry to tell me a little
bit about themselves and what they expect from me as their teacher. When I went to
formatively assess the journals that first weekend, I was surprised, shocked and happy
regarding their honest responses. Just from this first entry I was able to get a more personal
insight into what my students are going through outside of the classroom.
The following Monday, when I came back to school I remembered some facts about my
students and talked with them about them. They are pleased that I had remembered that
Shayla* had 20 horses and love to compete in trick-riding competitions. It also allowed me to
understand some of the struggles my students were facing. Some discussed what they
liked/disliked about English or one other explained that he was bullied for six years and that
he switched school about three times. When I found that out, it all made sense as to why he
would try and be the class clown (he wanted his classmates to like him). I was not as upset
with him when he would try to act out because I had this background information
*Name change

Hayleigh Johnson
PSII Reflection
3. Time needs to be set aside for catch-up
I never realized that so many students could be absent at any given time. As they get older,
they are involved in more after school activities. I had a student that was gone for two weeks
at the beginning of my practicum. I sent him off with what I could and hoped upon his return
he had learned something. I often grouped him with one or two people whenever we would
discuss a previous lesson. Others would be absent all weekend so they would not have time
to do their homework on the weekend. I spent a lot of my lunches working with students who
were behind one or two lessons. I would put a note in my records of each of the students that
were becoming farther behind and made sure that each lesson after I would check-in with
them to see if they were grasping the concept. Ive held a test for almost a week after I
marked 90% of it because I was still waiting on others to write.
After about a week or so after this happened whenever I had students that were missing, I
would make a copy of the lesson overview and the resources used. Upon their return I had
tasks they could work on more independently rather than having me re-teach the lesson.
One strategy I would like to implement is a class website. This would allow absent students
(and parents) who were absent access to an online database of the lessons, resources and
assignments.

Overall, I have learned that a teachers job is never finished. However, I always leave school
with a smile on my face. I look forward to building on my skills and techniques in my PSIII.