Well Week One is all over, I feel like it has gone so quickly. I thought it appropriate to look back at my first week of prac and create a reflection. I got the idea from Elly McCulloch and her blog ‘Week 1 Reflections’ in which she does exactly what the title of her blog says, she reflects on week one.
So here is my reflection of my mentors’ feedback from Week One:
A strength of mine that my three mentors have picked up on is my ability to plan and prepare a lesson. I always produce a lesson plan and have everything fully prepared for my classes which my mentors have noticed and have commended me on this. As a result of this planning my subject knowledge has been sound, which again has been commented on by me mentors.
My communication with the students has been developing and by the end of the week I feel as though I have built good rapport in all of my classes, this occurs through my interaction with the students. My mentors have told me I am very confident in front of a classroom which helps with the communication and interaction with my students.
There are two aspects of my teacher that I need to work on in the coming two weeks of my prac, these are effective questioning and active learning. An effective question is one that is meaningful, understandable, challenging but not too difficult for the students (Cornell University, 2016). I need to improve on this aspect of my teaching; I tend to ask open ended questions but then go straight to specific questions, I need to flesh out my questions more.
Secondly I need to ensure the students are actively learning in my class. Active learning is “students engage in activities, such as reading, writing, discussion, or problem solving that promote analysis, synthesis, and evaluation of class content,” (Centre for Research on Learning and Teaching, 2016). My mentor for my year 10 and 11 English class told me earlier in the week the students enjoy reading as a class, so I thought great I will utilise this. However this mentor was away on Friday when I took the double year 11 English class and another of my mentors sat in on it, he told me that he didn’t like asking students to read out loud in class as other students tune out. I feel a little lost here so I will discuss this with my year 10 and 11 English mentor on Monday to ensure that I am actively engaging my students in learning.
Centre for Research on Learning and Teaching. (2016). Active Learning. Retrieved on 21 May, 2016, from http://www.crlt.umich.edu/tstrategies/tsal
Cornell University. (2016). Using Effective Questions. Retrieved on 21 May, 2016, from http://www.cte.cornell.edu/teaching-ideas/engaging-students/using-effective-questions.html#what