The beginning of this semester marked the first time I had ever written a lesson plan. I had no idea what I was doing, but after a couple of hours I had one that worked. While my plan for my first solo lesson did a good job of using technology and encouraging class discussion this lesson did not include any Treaty Education or useful adaptive dimension, which resulted in students who have difficulty writing not expressing their ideas fully. After a few more weeks of writing lesson plans, discussion in class, and peer evaluation I wrote this lesson plan. This lesson includes Treaty Education and Treaty Essential Learnings in the book that I read the class and the ensuing class discussion. At this point I had a much greater understanding assessment and was better able to include my own views, including making assessment more of a constant and informal event. I also feel that I improved in my understanding of the Common Essential Learnings and was better able to encourage more students to become engaged in my lesson. In becoming more confident with the teaching ideas presented in class my lesson plans became more detailed and thus fulfilled these important pieces to my lesson plans and helped me become more confident in my own teaching.
This field experience taught me a lot about teaching and my own teaching philosophy and really solidified many of my previous beliefs. One thing that this experience taught me is that you can not plan for teaching. There were days when I had everything was perfectly planned and my co-op would make a suggestion or a student would ask a question that would take the lesson in a different direction. I learnt to take these as opportunities and rather than shutting the student down I would let the discussion evolve and relate it to our starting po int. This allows me to facilitate the discussion and gives the students a chance to relate it back to themselves, which will encourage the love of learning that I find extremely important. This field experience also gave me the chance to interact with students as a teacher. It encouraged my belief that as a teacher you must set the tone for the teacher student relationship from the start and always act like a professional, to gain students respect. Through learning about my own teaching I also learnt about my students. I saw the effects of encouraging individuality and using effective adaptive dimension and how the students respected me so much more after they got to know me a little bit during the warm up ac activity. I also saw how knowing a bit about the students from this activity allowed me to try and tailor my lessons to the students.
I feel as if I have progressed so far throughout this experience but I still have far to go. I want to continue evaluating my teaching and make changes as time goes on, so that I never become stagnant in my teaching. One thing I particularly want to work with is becoming confident in teaching subjects that I would consider in my weaker knowledge base. Teaching a variety of subjects is an important aspect to becoming a well rounded teacher and will help me guide my own lessons to my students interests and strong points, which I discuss in my teaching philosophy. I got a feel for this in my field experience when my field partner and I taught a math lesson at the beginning of the field experience. It was difficult but it gave me the chance to teach something outside of the arts. I felt the same when I helped lead a game of floor hockey in a gym class, it was challenging but gave me the chance to incorporate my classroom management strategies into a non-traditional classroom setting.