Reading Over My Own Shoulder

Leaving class on Monday, I was not convinced of the Lesson Study assignment. I think a big issue for me was that I had already written an official version of my lesson plan, so when I finished the lesson study, everything felt like a hassle. For most of the sections all I did was reword what I had already written; no deep thought was changing the way I viewed thinking about lesson planning. On top of that, the presentation of our lesson studies seemed to drag on during class time. That is not to say I dismiss the importance of listening and conversing with colleagues about their teaching ideas and strategies. In fact, I enjoy that process.  But this time around, things were taking too much time. As a future suggestion, I would advocate that every class period two students present their lesson study. I feel like this would give us more time to provide feedback to every topic, and, as a class, work towards better lesson design.

Now, after saying all the above, an interesting thing happened to me this week. I had to develop my second lesson – which was focused on values – and I found myself writing an initial outline using some of the techniques established in the lesson study assignment. Even though I had to eventually develop my writing into the official format, by sketching out the content, process, procedure, and evaluation beforehand made the entire process much more personal. By “personal” I mean that I felt much more connected to the lesson, unlike the feeling I get when using the formal pattern. So, while leaving class the other day I felt ambivalent, I just needed to give the technique a second look —

I need a second pair of eyes.

ImageNational Archives of the Netherlands                                  Description:  Ostrich reads newspaper of caretaker

Date: February 17, 1951

Ingredient number 904-4385

Creator: Anefo / Noske, J. D.


2 Replies to “Reading Over My Own Shoulder”

  1. Hey Collin,
    I, too, noticed how helpful the reflection was once I started planning for my next set of lessons. As I mentioned in my post, I found that freeing oneself from the rigidity of the lesson plan format was helpful when it came to actually thinking about the direction and content of the lesson itself. Rather than a reflection, I actually think the lesson study would be helpful in preparing for the classroom. Getting my thoughts to paper helps to focus in on my objectives and take into account the interest level and expectations I have for the students.

    1. Totally agree, Peter. I also think it worked well translating my lesson for my cooperating teacher. Instead of trying to read through all the formalities, she could get exactly where I wanted to go with my lesson. I felt much more connected to my lesson as well. From here on out, I’m pretty sure I’ll stick to the same method.

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