Describe the observed teaching situation, including seating arrangement, classroom decor, and any additional criteria necessary to present the learning environment
The teaching strategy employed by the teacher was dictated by many factors, including basic requirements of the course material, the personality of the teacher, goals of the course, the size of the class, instructional materials applied, and the response of students. The seating arrangement was altered because all students had to view what the teacher was demonstrating. Since it was a computer class, decorations were necessary since they helped students in understanding basic computer concepts, such as the use of the keyboard. The distance between one student and the other was spacious as compared to the normal class settings where students are expected to sit next to each other.
Each student was provided with a computer to avoid unnecessary interruption. If students were allowed to share a computer, unnecessary disturbances would be experienced. Each student was prepared psychologically to understand that this was a personal assignment because each student was expected to master computer usage skills at the end of the lesson. The teacher challenged students to prepare themselves with certain questions before attending the lecture.
This proves that class supervision is significant as far as effective learning is concerned. Supervision provides the required learning environment. A class arrangement that does not permit the teacher to access all learners is ineffective because the teacher may end up ignoring some students. However, in this lesson, the teacher was able to move around the class giving instructions on how learners were to use their computers to enhance their writing.
List the types of observed educational activities
A number of educational activities were observed from the lecture. One of them included the teacher walking around supervising the class, asking, as well as answering questions, giving instructions on how to use the computer, and assisting stranded learners. The teacher ensured that all students paid attention to what was being demonstrated in class. Another educational activity included students rising up their hands as an indication that they were ready to respond to questions.
Describe the observed delivery of instructions and any technology that was incorporated into the lesson
The fifth grade teacher used a lecture method to present the course material to her students. She instructed students to type information on their computers and use the computer in proofreading the written texts. As a result, students were seen reading from the paper and typing on the computer. The lecture method is an effective presentational technique because the teacher has enough time to explain concepts to students. Other techniques might not be effective in a computer class because students might not participate actively, given the fact that they have little understanding of the computer.
Analysis, Exploration, and Reasoning
Analyze the level of student engagement with the technology
In the video, the instructor gave a layout of the project’s objectives that needed to be achieved at the end of the class. This would give meaning to the content since it made learning relevant and achievable. Moreover, the teacher came up with objectives, which would serve as pointers of goal setting in education. When an instructor is developing a technique of delivering information, he or she must ensure that objectives that need to be achieved are designed.
However, in the interactive writing project, the teacher did not keep in mind the needs of all students attending the lesson. From the video, it is clear that some learners lacked typing skills that could enhance their understanding. This means that the teacher did not employ appropriate strategies since students took some time typing, and mostly concentrated on the monitor to ensure that what they were typing was accurate.
This shows that students were not comfortable with the approach that the teacher employed. On the other hand, some students were comfortable with the computer. They showed a high typing speed. Such students could have an upper hand in acquiring skills. Therefore, the teacher should have considered environmental and economic factors of her students before employing the strategy.
Through analysis, it can be observed that the strategies applied by the teacher in mentoring students were ineffective because efficient delivery of a lesson requires the teacher to incorporate approaches that put all learners on the same level. Students who might be insufficient in handling and accessing technology may lack interest and attention if the strategy is applied in future. For the teacher to achieve high results, she should have used elementary concepts as a foundation to build complex ideas.
Connections to Other Effective Teaching Practices
Explain how the observed teacher’s choice of technology relates to the instructional purpose of the lesson
The teacher ensured that her choice of technology related to the instructional purpose of the lesson by employing multiple teaching methods. She explored other options that proved reliable to the dissemination of the course material. Learning has become dynamic in the modern society, which calls for instructors to search for additional information in other sources, such as the internet. They should develop ways through which relevant skills would be achieved.
Language is the medium of delivering instructions meaning that instructors should use it to pass information to students effectively. In this sense, the technology employed by the teacher in the video related to the instructional purpose of the lesson. In the video, it was realized that learners used pamphlets while typing on the computer. They were able to refer and read their scripts while undertaking the technology lesson. The teacher did not depend on a single approach, but instead she employed the use of pamphlets to achieve the intended objective. Reading skills should be connected with writing skills, which is why the teacher made learners read from the paper, and transfer the read information to the computer.
Describe at least one alternative or additional form of technology that could contribute to the observed lesson
For the teacher to enhance learning, she should have embraced motivation. Motivation enables learners to develop an interest in the topic being discussed. Learners lose concentration and attention in boring topics hence motivation would help them concentrate more. Therefore, instructors should identify teaching approaches that would motivate students. This would help the teacher in capturing the attention of students for a long time.
Another strategy is the incorporation of the internet into the course material. Students can use the internet to access information. This would enable them to improve computer skills. Access to the internet would expose learners to a great scope of information, which may help in motivating students in the class. The teacher should have avoided approaches that make leaning teacher-centered. She should have developed ideas that would make the topic learner-centered (Borich, 2007). The teacher never allowed students to consult. This could be seen in the video since students turned from their computers to inquire from their friends what was going on in class. They were seen conversing and consulting in low tones.
Justify your choices of recommendations
Technology motivates adventure, making learners develop an interest in learning more. Secondly, through technology, a learner has a chance of acquiring multiple skills that would enhance learning. Nevertheless, technology may limit interaction amongst learners because every student is expected to concentrate on his or her machine. It is therefore recommended that as teachers embrace technology, they should consider the social interaction of learners at class level. Learning is holistic, and learners should be allowed to socialize in order to broaden and enhance their learning abilities.
Incorporation of the internet is encouraged because students might learn things easily. The internet helps in expanding the knowledge base of students. The teacher might not have enough time to show students everything that concerns the computer. However, the teacher could have improved the course material by simply coming up with additional internet sites and showing students how to visit the sites.
Personal Meaning and Professional Growth
Explain your initial reactions after viewing the use of technology in the observed classroom
The use of information technology in the observed lesson reflected an attitude of developing extra approaches to achieve effective learning. It helps learners in discovering their hidden abilities that had not been identified before. Learning becomes fascinating with such discoveries. Incorporating technology in education motivates learners to develop an interest in acquiring knowledge. This motivation enables learners in developing an interest in the topic being discussed.
Learners lose concentration and attention in boring topics because the world has become dynamic. Therefore, technology shows varied methods of teaching and at the same time facilitates effective learning. Depending on one method may not give the desired outcome of the curriculum. Therefore, instructors should embrace creativity to win the confidence of their audience and enhance learning. This suggests that content is a significant factor to be considered when designing teaching approaches.
Explain what you considered as you formulated ideas regarding personal and/or professional implications
A number of factors were considered, one being the educational needs of students at the advanced academic levels. Students are expected to write opinions whereby they can introduce a topic to a reader or clarify an opinion at the end of the course. Moreover, students at an advanced academic level are to support their claims by using strong words. Another aspect to be considered would be to select the best approaches. In addition, the instructor is required to adopt the best teaching materials to match the approaches recommended in the course material. The best approaches would be of value as far as the training needs of students are concerned. In this view, a number of plans would be undertaken to achieve the recommended strategy.
- Number one in the action would be to review the instructional materials employed by the teacher. This should be in line with the action plan recommended by the ministry of education. Thereafter, the instructional material would be compared to those of other institutions offering similar forms of training.
- For those students experiencing problems in grasping the course material, the instructor needs to include suitable materials, which would ensure that the needs of such students are met. Similarly, the instructor should identify those materials used by students exceeding the expectations of the course.
- After conducting an investigation, the teacher should land on the best approaches that have already been proven successful elsewhere. Such approaches would improve the needs of students.
Borich, G. (2007). Effective Teaching Methods: Research-Based Practice. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.