classroom observation

My mentor teacher is very hands off and even jokingly says she doesn’t really want to talk to the students too much. The classes are focused around work days. With only a few lessons per quarter. Individual students do ask questions and receive one on one instruction aside from the large group instruction. I understand her wanting to keep less chaos in this room due to the machinery, tools and all the sharp and/or explodable stuff. When she is beginning a lecture she asks for absolute quiet, no phones, stop talking, watch the screen or her. Pretty basic but necessary. During the lesson she reinforces the major points and sometimes draws on the board for clarification. Lesson closure is really about students getting to work on said project but she does ask for questions. Another common transition scenario is the leaving of class. She really wants to be dismissing the class. This is kind of a gray area. Some of them are at the far end of the class and have to make it to the other side of the school on a different floor. Today she went over expected behavior for that and kept the 3rd period kiddos for three extra minutes. So, while she did not make any new friends today, she made her point by reinforcing her desired transition style.

To open a lesson and to transition the class into receiving direct instruction, she will turn off the lights to gather their attention. Next she will ask for silence. She gives a brief explanation about what the presentation or message is about, gives them a time she wants to start and then turns the lights back on.She gives the students a few minutes to allow for them to get to a stopping place and to be more ready for the transition from working into listening mode. So far it has been pretty successful and giving students a start time anywhere from 5-15 minutes away allows for a smoother transition. This is a strategy I will try to utilize in the future.


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