Last week I experienced a busy return back to normal routines after what seemed like weeks of practice FSA exams falling on the days I spent in the classroom. In a slight role reversal, this week, I would be the student showing herself and teacher(s) what I can do as a teacher.
Let’s backtrack a week and discuss the planning of the guided lesson I would be implementing on Thursday. Without question, more time and attention was going to this lesson as I had to create it myself. Normally, the reading coaches and other third grade ELA teachers gather together to create the LPs. My experiences with and without their step-by-step plans differed greatly. Most of the differences would be from the fact I was being formally observed by my professor and that I had zero confidence in the creation of the actual lesson plan in relation to the unit or even weekly scheduled lesson plans. As far as the implementation portion goes, of course it is easier to watch and takes notes from someone else leading before taking the ropes (model/watch, together, by yourself concept) but the same uncertainties exist for both. I made a list with some positive experiences and areas of where improvement is needed for my pre-,during, and post-observation below:
CT provided resources and suggestions for LP
I was given freedom to choose how to do LP
Led me to question and reflect on my thinking
Made me be more aware that I needed a focal point in the LP — I had to shake the delusion that I could tackle everything all in one twenty minute guided
Had the opportunity to do lesson twice (for practice) before being observed
Made it through without any major management issues — yes, that was a fear of mine!
Time management skills — I always knew this would be a struggle for me as a beginning teacher. Some steps I will take to fix this is to plan LP using specific step by step plan with corresponding time referenced and to train myself on becoming more aware of how I distribute my time during the lesson itself.
My confidence — Honestly, its just a matter of time and practice.
Level of conciseness — At times, it is important to be overly repetitive and even elaborate and at other times it is best to provide short and specific direction. I have to make step-by-step, quote-by-quote guidance in my LP to help keep me on track.
It’s a funny thing for me to realize this was my first formal observation but my future holds so many more of them. I hope I will develop into the teacher I envision and when I’m observed I’ll have the confidence I need to make it through!
Until next week,