Saturday, January 16, 2010

Diversity in the Classroom

Before I began reading the chapter, I was excited by the chapter title because I have a very diverse classroom. When I began reading it I was happy to see that it stated that even before there were different types of classrooms, all "normal" classrooms were diverse. This is completely true because I remember back to the days when I was in elementary school and we didn't have different classroom for different types of learns. We were all in one room, even though we were all learning at different speeds, some of us slower than others...that being me. I was never great at math but I always tried. I remember that because I had such a hard time with math the only thing the school did was make me come in early one day for extra help. Sadly, I can't say that it helped. I think if it was for more than just that one day maybe I would have improved in areas where I needed too.

Going back to the chapter, I really like how they pointed out the important part that being that there are different types of learners. For me, I really like teaching hands on activities...this is also what I did for my intervention for my paper. I think hands on learning is important because you can make the lesson a lot of fun but educational at the same time. In my opinion, those who get the experience to do hands on learning will remember it more. However, even though this is my favorite way to teacher, I as a learner am very much a visual person. I have to always be taking notes and getting a visual of what is really going on. I remember even during a job interview one time I asked the woman, who later became my boss, to visually show me how a third shift worker's time clock worked and I remember her having to draw a clock for me with arrows and the whole deal so I could get the picture.

Also with these types of learners in the book, I like how they gave you procedures you could use for these types of learners.

Overall, I think one of the main things to remember from this chapter is that students have learning disabilities. However, just because they have learning disabilities doesn't mean that they are "unteachable" or "unable to learn". Everyone has their own way of learning and everyone has difficulty with something. With this, teachers need to make different types of lessons and not just teach one type of style. You as a teacher have to appeal to everyone and make sure that even though the student might not be able to tell you that they do better visually or kinesthetically, need to make your lessons applicable to each student. Also, if you think a student has a disability in an area, it's your job to address it.

The point of the chapter was diversity and that each student learns differently and there are different type of learning disabilities. This is something teachers must remember. I know everyday I go to work I tell myself, these kids are here for a reason and it's my job to help them succeed.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Week six

Chapter 1
The first thing I would like to touch on is speed-drill practice activities. I know this is at the beginning of the chapter but I really like speed drill practice. I have noticed that you can turn this type of activity into fun games that the students really enjoy... such as math around the world where each students stands by their desk, the teacher goes around the room with math flashcards and the student has one chance to answer the flashcard in less than five seconds. If the student gets it wrong they have to sit down and the last one standing wins. It's a really great game that I have noticed students really enjoy.

I also think that application activities have a lot of potential. This is an area where teachers can become creative in what they do with their lessons and how they teach their students.

I like how the chapter broke down what each of the different types of assessment tasks involved. It think it's really important to understand what each of these involve. These areas also show why it's important to have different types of components on a test...for example a true and false section, multiple choice section, essays, ect. This all validates why testing is important after the teacher has taught a section in a subject. It seems that in elementary through the end of my bachelor's degree, all the testing was about those three types of assessments. Now in grad school it seems to be more a long the lines of nontraditional assessment. I like it though because I feel like the teacher has to pay more attention to whether I really know the information rather than just throwing a test on my desk and having the scantron machine grade it. I think the blogging that we do is a good example of nontraditional assessment.

Chapter 13
I liked this chapter because it talked more about hands on learning and activities that can be done that are fun yet educational. However, I did think some of the activities were confusing- like the "round we go". I was easily confused by that. But, I liked the "Piles" activity. I think that one is more easier for younger children. In my class we do that a lot with feeling cards and putting the feelings that are similar together. (In my classroom we focus a lot on behaviors and correcting the behaviors).
Another activity that I have done many different ways is the scavenger hunt. I have noticed that students love it and it can be made in an educational way but fun so that the students see more of the fun side than the educational side but are learning. Scavenger hunts have such a two way street that it makes them very effective.
I thought this chapter gave a lot of ideas on different ways to make teaching into fun activities. I am going to spend some more time looking at this chapter because I really like the activity ideas that it has.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Hmwk Jan 6, 2010 class

I think it's important for teachers to understand the reading and writing process and the connection between the two. There are roles that are played between the two, one being the reader and the other being the writer. These two roles are so intertwined and important to understand that anyone teaching should be familiar with these roles. You can look at these two roles and compare them to the teaching and learning roles and compare them to each other. In special education we talk a lot about parallel process and these two, reading and writing, can be seen together as parallel process. That I think is one of the most important aspect of understanding the connection between the reading and writing process. A lot of what goes on between reading and writing is very connected in seeing that those that read, write and those who write, read. This allows the student to make connection is each of the areas. I think that when you are teaching the younger population it's always important to have them try to tell a story and also try to write a story. I know with my class now, I have an activity coming up where they are to do an art activity and make a picture with certain objects and then they have to write a story to go with their picture. I know a lot of my students are going to become frustrated because they cannot spell, however, they have great story telling ability. I also think this activity is going to be interesting because my students are better at reading than they are at spelling. So, I think this activity is necessary and will show the paralell process in reading and writing along with spelling.

Word recognition I think is really interesting. Word recognition reminds me of an activity that I did once in school where the teacher had a jumbled up sentence of words and showed us that we could still make out what was written in the jumbled up sentence because the position of certain letters were where they needed to be allowing us recognize what the word was really suppse to be. Being able to recognize the word allowed me to decode the word to what it was really suppose to be. Word recognition I think is really important in reading and spelling. In reading we are able to pull the word from our memorized word bank.

However, my question is, do those with dyslexia have trouble with word recognition or even those who have had head trauma or brain damage at a young age (or even any age).