Monday, March 21, 2011

St. Mary's Day 3

     This week at St. Mary's proved to be another fun, exciting experience from which I could learn. I have learned to recognize effective teaching strategies, and those which are less effective. Also during this visit I was able gain more experience assessing the elementary students. This week we assessed the same kids, Eric and Ana. The students' ability to execute particular locomotor skills such as leaping, horizontally jumping, and sliding were accurate in some regards, and not as much in others. While assessing I have learned there might be some amount of variable which can throw off a student's assessment. Although some of this week's locomotor skills weren't executed perfectly, there is always time for the students to develop their skills, as every child develops at a different rate.

     Some of the effective teaching strategies I used this week were the same as last week. The first strategy was to recognize the well behaved and mannered students who are listening attentively and reinforce their behavior either verbally or by granting them privileges such as becoming the first "tagger" for the activity. The other students not paying much attention soon understand the more behaved students are granted some form of reward, and they too begin to calm down and listen as attentively as their peers. Another strategy I used was to use a firm, direct, loud voice while describing my game. Using this type of voice, I was able to excite and hold the attention of the young students, which leads to their understanding of the activity they are to perform. Using these strategies is an enormous help, especially when you are trying to describe a game for many children.

     After spending another week at St. Mary's, it has become evident the students respect, and listen to us more as their model teacher. I have learned more about the children and what to say to them that will have them listen and behave quickly. I am looking forward to next week's visit to St. Mary's to strengthen the bonds I have made with the children, all while utilizing the information I have learned from the previous weeks to develop my professionalism an make myself a better teacher candidate.
Lab 3 Write Up

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

St. Mary's Day 2

     My time spent at St. Mary's this week was full of new learning experiences and practice with evaluation. This week the Lab's theme was cartoon, so my group member and I tweaked our games to include some of the kids favorite and funny cartoon characters, which the kids really enjoyed. At the school, I was introduced to some new teaching strategies which I'm eager to use in my own classroom someday. Some of the strategies include acknowledging the students displaying the correct behaviors our loud, which encouraged the students not doing the correct things to do them. Another strategy was to always describe the game about to be played to the kids in depth, before sending the kids out to run around and play. Another strategy was to tell the kids they're about to play a great game and that it is really fun, while squatting on their level. This will engage the kids from the start and keep their attention for a longer time. Also not asking the kids if they want to play game will increase their rejection of your game ideas. 

     Also this week, I evaluated two kids ages six to seven, in grades kindergarden or first. The boy, named Eric was able to perform certain locomotor skills better than the girl, Ana. The locomotor skills we evaluated the kids on were carefully hidden in the games used, which made the process run smoothly. The skills tested were running, hopping, and galloping. The kids were evaluated on various criteria, and for the most part the kids performed the skills accurately; with some exceptions. It sure is interesting watching and evaluating children for the first time, and made me feel more prepared to do it another time in the future.

Lab 2 Write Up