Friday, April 30, 2010

Post Video-Editing Reflection

I thought editing a video would be an all-day long process, but it was not. The experience was actually exciting because now I can add another technology notch to my teaching belt! After viewing my video, I am so shocked to see how I am in "real life". For starters, I cannot believe that I get so choked up on my words. During my focus, one of my students made an outburst, and instead of saying "Quiet.", I said "Quietly." I am a bit embarassed by that. Moving on, it appeared to me that I spent too much time trying to gather my materials for the small-group activity. I did like the way I monitored my students while they were in their small groups, though. I believe this contributed to how well-behaved many of them were. Because of technical difficulties, the cite-lab staff was unable to produce the closure to my lesson. I would really like to know how I "really" wrapped this lesson up. Overall, I see some room for improvement, and I will do my best to work out these kinks.

Post-Lesson Reflection

Okay, I can breathe because my lesson is over. My facilitator said I did a great job. My students, overall, behaved really well. I made sure to remind the students of my expectations for their behavior throughout the lesson. Also, I think that the students enjoyed creating a class menu filled with adjectives. Once I got past the focus of my lesson, I was not as nervous as when I began. Something just came over me and all my anxiety was gone. I did have a bit of technical difficulties before the lesson began, though. The pictures I was going to use for the focus of my lesson were uploaded to my flash drive. Well, my teacher's computer would not accept my flash drive. It was a good thing that I decided to check this before my lesson began. I had enough time to find more images on the internet and save them to a Word document to be saved to the computer. I definitely see the importance of having a back-up plan!

Pre-Lesson Jitters

Well, I am actually nervous about teaching my upcoming lesson on adjectives because I will be viewed by my facilitator and a peer. Also, I am nervous about how my students will behave in class. Although I have told my fourth-graders that someone will be coming into the classroom to observe me, I am not sure that this will be enough to keep them on-task throughout my lesson. I also hope that my students will actually understand what I am teaching them. This is the first whole-group lesson I have ever taught any students, so I am sure you can understand my anxiety.

Final Reflection

Wow, I have learned so much this semester. My methods instructors have taught me so many wonderful lessons to implement into my future classroom. My social education instructor has made me totally look at history and/or social education in a different light. I now see just how to create higher-level questions for my students. My science methods course has really shown me the importance of allowing students the chance to explore a concept before introducing the content. Math is one of my most favorite subjects, now. I understand how using manipulatives will help students comprehend math concepts. In language arts, I completed a number of literacy activities, such as Book Boxes, that will be sure to get the attention of my future students.

Observing my second rotation teacher has truly been a great experience. She is only a second-year teacher, but she has many teaching strategies that I would love to use in my future classroom one day. She has a love for her students and for teaching in general. Her feedback to me has really been constructive. I most certainly value her opinion. Our working relationship went so well, in fact, that she told me I could use her as a reference for employment. This meant a lot to me.

Quest 2 is a work-filled semester, and I was so nervous about embarking upon this workload. Reflecting on this experience, I can see the fruitages of my labor through my reflective and presentation portfolios. I think they both turned out great! I just want to say that although this semester has been the most challenging of my time as a student, I definitely have learned the most from this semester.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

My Midterm Reflection

I have learned so many new teaching strategies and activities to use in my class, thanks to the Methods courses. Math was never a fun subject for me, until now! I think it is in part to the use of manipulatives, such as base-ten blocks and some interesting counters Dr. Wilson has brought in the classroom. In addition, learning new ways to do math problems in contrast to the traditional algorithms I was taught in school really makes this a great learning experience. Completing the science resource file has really given me a wealth of knowledge on the topic I researched. Also, receiving reference lists from my classmates is sure to help me with future science lessons.

I have had some challenges so far in the program. For example, I was placed in a fourth-grade classroom where the Writing TAKS test was greatly emphasized. In all honesty, the teachers felt it to be a challenge for them to allow the Quest students time to fit in any required lessons. To accommodate my teacher, I created lessons that contained writing activities as well as lessons that my teacher could extend into a writing lesson. For this, my teacher seemed appreciative.

As far as the Professional Attributes of attendance/punctuality, demeanor, and written and oral communication that I discussed in the beginning of the semester are concerned, I am on the right path. I have not been tardy or absent to my classes to date. With the Quest 2 workload, I have no choice but to continue working on my oral and written communication skills. Also, in my cluster, we have formed a close-knit community that makes it so much easier for me to work cooperatively and collaboratively.

For the remainder of this semester, I want to learn new teaching strategies that will allow me to keep my students interested and engaged throughout their learning experience. I also want to build working relationships with my classmates that will last throughout my teaching experience.

Friday, January 29, 2010

My Beginning Reflection

This semester, I have really examined the Quest Professional Attributes like never before because I understand that they are an important part of me becoming a professional. One of the Quest Professional Attributes that I keep at the forefront of my mind is attendance and punctuality. In all honesty, I am not a morning person, meaning I find it extremely difficult to get out of the bed when the alarm sounds. Yet, being a teacher requires that I arrive at my school on time each day to ensure adult supervision of my students. Therefore, I awaken two hours before my arrival time, and I prepare all of my belongings the night before.

Another Professional Attribute I need to give special attention to is the attribute of demeanor. I am somewhat of an introvert when it comes to adult relationships. Of course, I love the little ones, which is why I am choosing the teaching profession. However, I tend to withdraw from socializing with many people just because I hate to be disappointed. This part of my personality will need to be avoided with respect to other faculty members. Team teaching is an essential part of today's school curriculum. I must set aside personal thoughts and feelings, in order to collaborate effectively with my workmates.

I must say that my oral and written communication skills are some of my strong suits. Also, I am enthusiastic about teaching young ones to reach their greatest potentials. To do this, I must possess a high level of organization skills. I would say that I am an organized student and soon-to-be organized teacher.