Thursday, January 31, 2013

Journal Entry # 3

Summary: Lesson plans refer to all the activities that teachers do as they create, teach and evaluate lessons with their students. When it comes down to doing a lesson plan a teacher has three elements that they need to include; academic content, teaching goals, and learning assessments. Academic contents are the facts, concepts, ideas, and skills that they want to share with the students. Teaching goals, methods, and procedures is what they will use in their classes. Teachers use this on a daily bases. With this a teacher can use life experience in their lectures. It makes it more exciting in the classroom. A teacher who can add real life stories makes you want to hear what they went through. One of my professors does this in our criminal class and keeps the class wanting to hear more. You can see it all happening as he explains in details all the arrests and car crashes he did when he was a police officer. Technology comes to play in lesson plans if a teacher decides to use presentation software, visual thinking threaded discussions and when they send emails about the discussions. There are so many other ways technology can be used in a lesson plan; it’s an endless amount of possibilities. Teachers can be creative in their own ways. Learning assessments occurs before, during, and after teaching lessons. This lets the teacher see if the students understand the lecture and see how they took in the knowledge. Learning assessments are no longer just the old boring way of "let's take out a paper and pencil and start a quiz", technology has taken that over as well! As students, we can now take electronic tests and quizzes, online surveys, and so much more!
        When it comes time to assess and evaluate students, it comes down to how a teacher explained their lesson plan. Many teachers like to add stories as I mentioned earlier. They can do many things to try to keep the information locked into the students’ brains. To do so, make the lesson plan different and exciting as much as possible. Taking tests and quizzes can show if they did understand what you told them. Test assessments have been upgraded and technology comes to play. As teachers, now they can use electronic grading software. This is a virtual recordkeeping system. It is a great source because it allows a teacher to see where a student is struggling and try to help the student as much as possible. Performance assessments measures what someone actually does in a certain activity, assessing performance within the context of that activity. They can also do this by using a student performance rubric. This will show
·         How accurately they define a problem
·         How successfully they design a strategy for solving a problem.
·         How effectively they implement the plan
·         How clearly they explain their findings and conclusions.
Focus Question # 4: How can teachers evaluate and assess their students?
There are many ways a teacher can do this
Ø They can do this before, during, and after a lesson plan
Measure what the students’ knowledge about the subject
Ø Technology has many options of tests and quizzes , also doing online surveys, portfolios, and student writing
Ø Using standard-based assessment which is used to measure student performance in a specific national, state, or local standard.
Ø Using the student performance rubric which can help show you each individuals’ student weak spot on a subject.
Ø The old fashion way of asking students’ to take out a sheet of paper and pencil to start taking a test
Opinion: I think that is great now that we have so many more options to explore on taking tests and quizzes. Growing up I did not like having the only option of the old fashion way. Doing online tests are much more comfortable. Being able to go home and doing it is much easier just because you don’t feel pressured as much. Surveys can tell you how well a student knows a specific subject, and when a student does not feel as if it’s a test their mind is more at ease. Teachers now have more options than ever to help out students pass each grade level.  With this being said, teachers are still having difficulties keeping up with the state and national policies concerning with the standardized testing. Teachers have so much to keep in mind, that their job is not always appreciated by many. On the website, which was made in Massachusetts, is an advocacy organization that is trying to seek the end of misuses and flaws of standardized testing. It goes on by clarifying information about test policies at all education level. To me, this would be a great help as a starting teacher who might be having problems and feeling overwhelmed with their job. It also goes into greater depth about the No Child Left Behind Law and minority test takers as well.  

On the webpage you can learn 8 ways to fight high-stakes testing, common care assessments  It lets you sign the national resolution on high-stakes testing. This website can be helpful and bring you information about testing and about others who care about the public education. IT allows you to see testing from all grade levels, has news letters, and fact sheets. If you are the type to be more hands on you can get involved with the organization and join the cause.
                No matter what career choice you decide to take, in the beginning you will feel overwhelmed with having to soak up every bit of information given to you. Best advice is to take your time and do not stress out. Everything at the end will come to place and eventually understand what it takes to be a teacher. No one said it would be easy, but you are here to help out the children and their future is in stake. Always make it about the students!

1 comment:

  1. Great examples of different assessment tools and thinking about how they might be used differently in the classroom. The emphasis on standardized testing unfairly determined too many individual student and schools as inadequate - very high stakes! There is a place for standardized testing, but it needs to be matched appropriately to the purpose and kept in balance. Thanks for an interesting post.