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Department of Teacher Education & Learning Sciences

Elementary Education Program

Formal Observation Reflection


Directions: Complete the reflection questions and submit your response to your observer prior to having a post-
conference to discuss the observation. If a conference is held immediately after the observation you will submit
your responses to the observer the following day via email.

Name: Rebecca Pridgen Date: November 21, 2017


1. To what extent were learning outcomes appropriate and achievable to your students?
The learning outcomes that I had for my students were closely related to the North
Carolina standards for first grade curricula. The lesson itself was planned in such a
way that students could learn these standards through a lesson that built off their
previous knowledge. Students then applied this new knowledge to a hands-on activity
that matched their developmental stage of expression (drawing with some writing).

2. How effective were your instructional strategies? What changes would you make in
your instructional approaches if you taught this lesson again? Why?
I feel that my instructional strategies were very effective throughout the lesson. I used
the class, class call and response to get their attention when needed as well as the
hands and eyes method that their teacher already uses. Both of these worked very
well and helped me to pace the lesson. I think an improvement that I could make
would be to use a visual timer to help keep students on track with their work within the
time constraints. Some studies were not using their time wisely and I think seeing how
much time they had left to work would keep them focused and on task.
3. Evaluate the effectiveness of your oral and written communication with students.
(Consider how well you communicated learning objectives, clarity of directions, use of standard English, quality of
questions and effectiveness of discussion techniques.)
At the beginning of the lesson, the class and I related what they had learned in the
past to what they were going to learn in the lesson. I clearly stated the learning
objectives and told them an overview of what they would be doing. After doing the read
aloud, I clearly gave them directions of how to do the hands-on activity and used a
thumbs up method to gauge whether or not everyone understood the directions.
Throughout the lesson, I circulated students working and asked them questions about
their family structures and their drawings. Once they finished, I did a partner sharing
activity where they compared and contrasted their family structures to one another and
then shared out to the class something they learned about their partners family. This
helped students to actively pay attention and listen to what their partner was saying.
4. Evaluate the level of student engagement in your lesson . (Consider how you presented the
content/skills, the activities and assignments for students, grouping of students, and structure and pacing of the
lesson.)
The students seemed to be actively engaged during the read aloud of Families,
Families, Families and the discussion after. I did notice that during the drawing activity
where they illustrated their families that students started to get off task. Some of this
was due to the fact that they finished early but other cases were just of students
talking to one another and not being focused. I think that I could improve this by telling
the class additional things that they could do once they finished their drawing like
writing a sentence about their family on the back. I could also have a timer on the
board to help them visually see how much time they had left. This would give those
finished early something to do instead of talking and losing engagement as well as
keep those who were not using their time wisely to better stay on track within the given
time.
5. How effectively did you use instructional materials, resources, and/or technology?
For this lesson, I made a point to create a craft that students could use the materials
that were in their shared materials bin at the center of their table. My teacher fills this
daily with pencils, glue sticks, scissors, and crayons. I decided to use these materials
because students already knew the procedures for using them and were comfortable
sharing these materials as they had done all semester long. In addition to the shared
supplies at the center of their tables, I made use of a poster board which I had glued
squares of colorful construction paper to. I explained that this would be our class
family quilt and that once they finished drawing their families, we would glue all of our
pictures to the colorful squares. This was an effective visual aid that helped students to
understand how not all families look alike but how this diversity makes our
communitys culture great. It also helped students to visualize the end product while
creating their illustrations.

6. To what extent were your assessment strategies effective? What changes would you
make in your assessment approach if you taught this lesson again? Why?
One of my assessment strategies with the ELA standards I was trying to meet was a
class discussion. While this engaged all students, I only had time to pick a few of them
to hear their answers. I think that I could improve this by doing a think-pair-share
activity where students talk together about my questions while I walk around and hear
their discussions. This would give me a better understanding of every students
learning and not just the few that I call on during a class discussion.

7. To what extent was your feedback to students accurate, substantive, constructive,


specific, and/or timely?
I feel that my feedback to students was accurate in that I made observations about
their work in a positive way. After sharing what I loved about their worked, we talked
together about ways that they could add to their work to make it even better. This
helped me give constructive feedback to students with them instead of just telling them
what to fix or improve.
8. To what extent did the classroom management and environment contribute to student
learning? (Consider your classroom procedures, your use of physical space, and the students conduct.)
Throughout this lesson, I tried to focus on positive classroom management with my
students. To do this, I made comments like I like how____ is working quietly when
students were behaving well. This helped other students do the same without me
having to negatively talk to them about their behavior. I think that this positive
classroom management helped students to practice good behavior without the fear of
negative repercussions.
9. Did you make modifications to your lesson plan during the lesson? If so, what were
they and what motivated these changes?
I actually had to modify the time that I had allotted for students to finish their drawings.
After the five minutes that I had planned was up, I had students give me a hand signal
showing how far along they were with finishing their work. By seeing that most of the
students had not yet finished, I extended the time and reminded students of how much
more time they had left. I think that this was an important modification so that students
could finish the task at hand with a small amount of additional time.
10. Was your Teaching Behavior Focus goal met?
Yes, my teaching behavior focus of being positive with classroom management was
met. My mentor teacher and I talked about how I used positive encouragements and
used positive language with students when critiquing their behavior. She said that she
had noticed improvement in this area of my teaching over the semester and in this
lesson.