Thursday, October 9, 2014

(Almost) One Week In..

I can't believe I already (almost) have a week of school under my belt.  For the most part, the week has flown by, and I am 100x more acclimated to the culture here than I thought I would be by this point.

Yesterday we had an early release as the teachers had parent/teacher conferences.  It was nice to come home early and have time to relax before actually feeling like I had to accomplish anything. (Not that I accomplished anything anyway...my EdTPA lessons still have a little ways to go).

Teaching Notes:

  • My teacher uses a "mirror" technique often.  For example, if she says a spelling word or vocabulary definition, the students mimic her and repeat it.  Sometimes she uses hand motions to represent something as she talks about it which the students also repeat.  I think that is a good way to help them remember something and also lets you know if they are paying attention or not.
  • I began to have my first real interaction with the students today (as in not just observing/chatting/answering their questions).  We did math stations and I ran a decimal/fraction activity.  
  • A game the OK professor taught us: you pair the students together and they play it much like "Rock, Paper, Scissors."  Instead of saying "rock, paper, scissors, shoot," you say, "I love math, shoot!" and on "shoot" you hold up a number.  The first person to add the two numbers (from each persons hand) together correctly wins and you play again.  This can then be done with two hands, one handed multiplication, and two handed multiplication.
  • An attention grabber than my teacher uses that works really well is saying "Class, class!" to which they respond, "yes, yes!" And she says "Give me a yes!" and they respond, "yes!"  It's definitely something that would have to be practiced to work but it does work really well.
It is interesting to be here where they only have two months of school left considering just last month I was just starting school with my second graders in River Falls.  As my teacher told me this afternoon, I will get to experience two totally different forms of 'teacher stress.'  My cooperating teacher is great.  She is a really fun person to be around and I enjoy watching her teach.  

I am very excited for tomorrow, as we will be headed to Arenal National Park for a weekend vakay.  Volcano, rainforests, hot springs...I'll post pictures on Sunday/Monday, but if you want a preview.. http://www.arenal.net/


 
Snapshots from the bus ride to school

The view from my classroom; I love the mountains in the distance



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