Analysis of example videos from 3 Classrooms
1.Project base learning Roller coaster physics:
And lesson plan: http://pilotrobertmace.edu.glogster.com/roller-coaster-lab/
Example of Ms. Donna Migdol class demonstrates fantastic project base learning of 5th graders.
The base foundation for that class was exceptional lesson plan well organized and thought through. It included not only learning objectives presentation and work with material plan, but also very clear and relevant accommodating set of norms and rules.
It becomes apparent from the video that behavioral issue is not a problem in that class. Kids are really involved in learning process which itself set on high academicals expectations. But to to reach academical expectations the base of behavioral expectations was established.
That video shows us the result of implementing rules norms and procedure and creating positive learning atmosphere.
In that project students are involved in studying and experimenting with Roller Coaster Physics; they are designing a roller coaster that is both fun and safe as they learn about Newton’s 3 laws of motion.
Through the process of that project students learn how to communicate (explain/present) ideas, perform system thinking, apply theoretical science to design and modify models, solve problems, experiment with different materials…
That list can be continued and it is important to emphasize that many of the skills are definitely fit in class of 21st century skills.
This project-based learning was in reached with various approaches and tools. Kids manually made experimental materials, measured and collected data and father analyzed it and present data using computers. Lesson demonstrated great use of technology.
We sow impressive approach to encourage students to think about connection of theory project problem with real worlds limitations like financial cost. Those categories of project, price and fun cover lots of aspects for problem solving.
Through the steps of the project students worked on its optimization they deal with misconception to clear out correct understanding.
Doing a teamwork approach students have a choice of type of work they can do in order to be most efficient and do something they actually like following their intrinsic motivation (organizer/ leader – control of process, accountant – money balance budgeting). That gave them a sense of freedom an opportunity to practice “profession “choice.
So vile learning Science and its application students welcome problems and enjoyed the challenge.
That lesson gain to create life long problem solvers who can figure out steps for solving problems and will not be afraid of them.
Teacher communicated those high objectives with big trust in student’s abilities to reach them.
- The Chinese Third Grade Math Class:
In that class students in a 3rd grade Chinese math class repeat a series of rhymes/ chants while learning multiplication table and other math questions. Students seem to be really engaged in a class activity there is no sign of disobedient behavior.
It is clear that kids know the routines / traditions of lesson and they having fun demonstrating their knowledge.
Teacher obviously spent lots of time practicing with kids, training them before we see video results.
Teacher keeps real high intensity –I felt like it was in that in that gym aerobic group of next level when you really can not catch up with moves as you were not training with group before. She keeps on bringing positive reinforcement to answering students (as far as my Chinese go to understand that…) Clearly teacher has high expectations of her students both in performance and behavior
From the article we find out that, Chinese students begin learning their math’s facts at a very early age: math textbooks begin with multiplication in the first semester of second grade, when children are seven years old. In order to understand multiplication, pupils have to memories the multiplication rhyme: “four times eight is 32, five times eight is 40” and so on, which was invented by ancient Chinese scholars 2,200 years ago.
Reflection of that tradition we see in the video
“Chinese math education holds a believe that routine practice is the most efficient way to learn.”
Out of my experience living in China I know that it is a the country of high expectations for kids and often it reflects in a huge pressure of parents to kids and society on parents.
Kids must spend endless hours studying taking extra schools and using tutoring help.
All that if parents can afford that and all that often results in a psychological breakdowns of kids.( or kids are sort of missing the childhood …)
Another side of Chinese approach is big luck of creativity in teaching and as a
result in society in general. The routine practice is great approach but it cannot be the only approach.
So the problem of lack of height expectation in a west might have reverse side in some cases.
- Whole Brain Teaching (WBT):
In that class example teacher is using the Whole Brain Teaching method (WBT). I looked it up and found big support system, special website with advice on that approach and option for membership … And it seems that one can take it to extreme and implemented everywhere. Like that video may be were saturated with WBT, but it was great to demonstrate its efficiency.
I liked short 5 rules coming from WBT: 1. Follow directions quickly. 2. Raise your hand for permission to leave your seat. 3. Raise your hand for permission to speak. 4. Make smart choices 5. Keep your teacher happy.
Using more gestures and signs can be great in a class to mountain concentration on new subject and not wasting time for side problems.
Great idea of use of motoric in connection with obtaining information that is definitely help for making body brain connections to stimulate memories and also teaching use of gesticulation and keeps students tuned and connected.
Teacher for sure has the attention of all students; she keeps bringing them back by using “call and answer” technique
For sure this teacher also have high behavior and performance expectations of her students
Setting high performance expectations among my students
All of the 3 videos present interesting and impressive/successful examples of communicating teacher’s expectations to students. Students are facing challenges to reach higher in their achievements.
I would like to take some of their approaches to my teaching practices. The project-learning example is especially applicable to science teaching of middle school. Making that stimulating environment for reaching top potential of students is important.
And I see that it based on strong base of behavioral expectation and training with farther creating approach to presenting academic challenges.
I will read more about WBT techniques as it seems some of them as well as chanting approach can be used for holding class together but I see those as additional tool may be specially for transitions and structuring the class.
Keeping respect, as a fundamental rule is important. One can build up collaborative and also stimulating competitive approach without loosing positive atmosphere in a class.