After being observed for the first time by my cognitive Coach, I now know what I need to work on and what strategies I can use to improve. Before my lesson I let my coach know my main goal as a teacher, engage all students in the room. The key word in this goal is all. I noticed that many students were not required to participate and were not expected to either. They essentially were given up on, and I wanted to get those students back into the class and back to learning.
During the reflection about how my lesson went, we discussed how well I reached my goal. I felt I had gotten some students who aren’t normally involved a chance to learn through collaborative work. but also many students were still continually off task and unwilling to try to learn. Additionally, we found that while I had done a good job circulating around the room with quick discussions being held at each group, I also failed to talk to a couple groups more than once meaning I did not adequately check their understanding. These were the two major problems that my coach and I talked about.
So what will I do next to advance my learning you may ask, and if you did ask that, I would first say that that is a great question! Then I would say that I have two plans of action. For the students who are still unengaged, I will work to give them ownership of their learning. To do this, I will plan choices for individual students to make such as allowing them to pick between two groups. One that will be with me working through a similar problem at the board and another group that will go to the back of the room and work collaboratively on some similar but more challenging problems. Giving them this choice will hopefully get each student to buy in to the class and increase their engagement.
Next is my plan for improving my own class circulation methods and to ensure that I hit every group an adequate number of times during collaborative work time. To improve this, I plan on making it more of a conscious effort to do so. Being able to self regulate myself rather than just going with the flow should be beneficial. Additionally, I will have the students assess my efforts by asking them, in an exit pass format, how many times a teacher checked to make sure you were understanding the problems.