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School Experience Reflection Journal

Educational Psychology
Ashlee Karsteter
School: Manchester Elementary
Grade Level: K, 2

30 March 2015
Teacher: Teke, Macke
General Education

Chapter 4: Complex Cognitive Processes

Self-regulation is the process of taking control of and
evaluating ones own learning and behavior. It is an important
skill for learners to internalize. Reread some sections of
Chapter 4, especially p. 111-115. Explain two teaching
strategies that you used while tutoring or working with the
students, which would promote self-regulated behavior in the
Response: While working with students, I promoted self-regulation by
practicing perspective taking. For instance, I told a student that it was
time for him to go outside, but he wasnt going to be upset when the
bell rang to come back in because he would not have long outside.
Another example is that when I asked a child to move his clip down for
not following directions, it meant that he would not get to take his toy
outside for recess. When he went to move his clip, I reminded him that
he would not be taking his toy outside and that it was a choice he
made when he chose to not follow directions. In reminding students of
the proper response, I am teaching self-regulation. In addition, when
tutoring students, we teach social cues. A student came up to me
upset because another student had stolen his eraser. In reality, a
student took it off his desk to borrow and would return it, but had not
asked for permission. I asked both students to come speak to me and
explained to one that we must first ask permission and then the other
would share and not be upset. I did explain to the upset student that it
was not a reason to be crying and that he was not hurt. All issues were
Reflection: Something I have started doing recently when a student
approaches me very upset is first asking them to take a deep breath.
When they do this, most of the time, they immediately calm down so
that they can be understood. This allows me to better communicate
with the students. When looking back at the situation, I wish I wouldve
asked the student who was very upset over the eraser to take a deep
breath. But, when working with little ones, everything is a big deal to
them. They have to be taught what is considered an emergency.
Chapter 5: Cognitive Development

Chapter 5 examines cognitive development and intelligence.

Think about your interactions with the student in the grade
level of your placement. Think about the teaching strategies
you used during tutoring or working with the students. Explain
whether or not the teaching strategies that you employed
encouraged development or logical thinking abilities. Identify
types of activities that are enhancing intellectual
development. What activities did you use to exemplify ways of
addressing multiple intelligences? You may want to revisit
multiple intelligences.
Response: I worked with a small group of boys in the hallway, and
together, we sorted shapes. We sorted shapes by: Size, Color, Shape,
and Thickness. Everything was going fine until we came to sorting and
differentiating the shapes in regards to their thickness. In the 15
minutes I spent on teaching them how to differentiate between
thickness, I was able to touch and enhance understanding based on
several different intelligences from the Multiple Intelligences list. In
experiencing and working through their problem together, I was able to
diffuse any uncertainty by helping to form inferences and create logical
pathways to solving like problems in the future. I made sure, before
moving on, that the students truly understood the concept.
Bodily-Kinesthetic : By allowing the students to manipulate the
shapes and lay on the floor allowed the boys to move. They
were able to touch the shapes and visually and physically
compare the thickness of two shapes to make the comparisons
Visual/Spatial: By manipulating and playing with the pieces the
learners who prefer this method were able to see and
comprehend similarities and differences among shapes, sizes,
and thickness. I was able to show the learners the similarities
and differences when we had the physical shapes in hand.
Linguistic: As a Linguistic learner myself, I prefer the explicit
definitions and to be told EXACTLY what needs to be done. I do
not need to see itI need to talk about it and discuss what is
being asked of me. I took this approach too when working with
the students. I talked the boys through exactly how to tell the
difference between thicknesses, what thickness was, and defined
what they needed to know.
Reflection: I was very happy to see the change in the students. This
concept did matter as they were being tested on sorting later in the
week for their report card or progress report. I would have done it a

little differently thoughI wish I wouldve been able to work with the
entire class to make sure everyone understood the concept. When I
presented something as simple as shape thickness, I did think about
how to get through on many levels to a six year old. When one
example did not get everyone to grasp the concept, I knew I had to try
another avenue, another door, intelligence viewpoint. If this is how
everyone learns to teach, although time consuming, it would create a
very positive experience for all students education.
Chapter 6: Motivation and Affect
Review the characteristics of learners exhibiting mastery goals
and students demonstrating performance goals on p.202. Be
mindful that students who have mastery goals desire to
acquire additional knowledge or learn new skill for the sake of
learning. Students who exhibit performance goals wish to
demonstrate high ability and make a good impression. How
would you categorize many of the students in terms of goals
(mastery or performance) in the tutoring or RTI setting that
you regularly visit? What caused you to reach this conclusion?
How might you encourage students to engage in mastery
goals? Did you see signs of anxiety or other forms of affect in
students in the tutoring or RTI setting of your school
Response: For my RTI group, I have been working with Tier 3
students. For example, they are not the bottom students, but they are
below average. A lot of the reason they are below average is that they
have parents who are not involved in their educationeven as
Kindergarten students. They do not receive help at home, and
therefore are struggling to keep up with the sight word recognition
required. With the five students in my RTI group, I would qualify four of
them as having performance goals and one with a mastery goal
mindset. One student in particular wants to learn more words for the
sake of learning and works hard to accomplish all tasks set before him.
However, he does not have the mental capacity to perform higher than
he is working now. He will always work hard to stay at grade level. No
matter what story we are reading, worksheet we are working on, or
sight word we are practicing, he goes above and beyond and strives to
USE the word: in a sentence, the plural, or synonyms. The other four,
however, do not enjoy reading or working to improve. They do just
what they have to do in order to not have to repeat the work for
homework. They complain when a new word in introduced and hate to
go over the sight words again (because they dont remember the old
ones). They understand that words and the language builds, but do not
want to advance because they do not want to have harder books to

read and take tests on for the AR program. Even in Kindergarten, they
have the system figured out.
To attempt to encourage my group, I have allowed the new sight
words and sight word games to become a challenge. When we are
doing sight word recognition, whoever is the first to correctly identify
the sight word receives ONE m&m piece of candy. This may not be the
healthiest thing, but the students are actually participating and
wanting to learn. Now, some are practicing a little at home and this is
helping their reading fluency and recognition.
Reflection: The only thing I would change about motivating the
students in my RTI group is to find something that works for them, and
does the job of motivation, but does not involve candy. I do not like
giving out candy to students, but at times, it is the easy answer.
Students always respond to candy.
Chapter 7: Personal, Social, and Moral Development
Think about the concept sense of self and its implications for
teaching and learning. Review the developmental trends on
p.245 of your textbook. Did you see indication of sense of self
affecting learning of the students with whom you worked?
Explain. What effect did perspective taking have on the
teaching and learning environment? Reread p.255 in your
textbook to understand developmental trends. If you observed
aggressive behavior, explain the type of aggressive behavior
that you witnessed.
Response: A positive sense of self is seen in most, if not all,
Kindergarten students. They do not know any different, and will most
always put a smile on a face around them. They have yet to be tested
for their achievement tests, they are not yet accustomed to the trials
of the Istep, and very little, if any, bullying has taken place. These
students sill believe they can and will do anything and everything. As
we near the end of the year, they are beginning to understand the
differences in cognitive abilities, but this has not been displayed for all
to see for years on end. The same kids are not consistently on the
bottom, etc. All the students in Mrs. Tekes class realize is that they
are placed in different groups for RTI and Differentiated Math
instructionthey dont yet understand these groups are based on
ability. The sense of self has yet to create HUGE implications on the
effects of teaching. Once in a while, an adjustment will need to be
made or an encouraging word will have to be offered. At times, a child
will become frustrated with a concept theyre not understanding; but
reassurance is typically all it takes to return the lesson to its proper

In Kindergarten, perspective taking is used in EVERYTHING that is

done. For example, for students to put their name on their paper, they
repeat in cadence: Put your name on your paperDo it RIGHT NOW
Not in 5 minutesNot in 5 secondsDo it right nowPut your name on
your paper. The idea is that by the time the students are done
repeating, in cadence, the phrases, their name is on their paper.
However, the number of students who forget to write their name on
their paper when the cadence is not said is huge. Another example is
when they sit for their morning meeting they have another cadence on
how to sit with manners, etc. When they get in line, they are reminded
of how to be a positive, helpful Kindergartener. In Kindergarten, they
are essentially taught how to be students and the social cues that will
go on to become a part of their everyday educational journey.
Reflection: Mrs. Teke is a very Authoritarian teacher. She is strict and
demanding, yet understanding and soft. The students work very hard
to achieve her high standards, but she makes sure they understand
that her job is to make sure they understand and enjoy learning. She
tells her students all the time that she is their biggest cheerleader. I
worked with a small group sorting their shapes by color, size,
thickness, and shape. A few of the boys were struggling when they
were asked to differentiate the shapes by thickness. After encouraging
the boys and asking several probing questions, I showed them an
example. When they still were not understanding, I put those
particular blocks away and got new blocks from the bag and we
worked together to group the new ones. When the students were
able to start over, they began to understand. I made sure to
encourage their work as I probed the students and used perspective
taking techniques to walk their brains through the process. Patience is
key to success.
Chapter 10: Assessment Strategies
What types of assessments did you employ with the students?
Did you choose to use different types of assessments? If you
did use a variety of assessment tools, explain why different
assessments were necessary?
Response: While working with my second grade RTI group, I have
employed several means of assessments: formative and summative.
The use of several types of assessments is used to ensure maximum
educational growth in the lessons being presented. Not all assessments
require traditional pencil and paper; some simply require a basic
question. In my group, we worked together to read a novel, The World
According to Humphrey. During this story, I felt it was necessary to
stop and check for understanding and comprehension, in addition to

plot scenarios and cause/effect relationships. I also had the students in

my group work on worksheets that paralleled the story and the content
involved. Each night the students were to read a chapter, the next day
we would work on a worksheet and discuss. At the end of the novel, I
provided a Summative assessment in the form of a traditional test,
which included essay, multiple choice, and short answer.
Reflection: I was very grateful to Mrs. Macke as she allowed me to
plan and implement the entire until on The World According to
Humphrey. This allowed me to grow as a teacher and a person. By
allowing me to do the work, I was able to connect the standards,
lessons, assessments, and knowledge first hand to the students and
see the development of knowledge form. If I were to have another
chance, I would increase the use of discussion about the general flow
of a story or book: plot, cause/effect, characters, crisis, etc. and draw
connections not only to the novel at hand, but other familiar situations.