Mrs. Laners’ teaches first grade at Smallville Elementary School in Smallville, Ohio. Her class is made up of nineteen students, eight of which have been diagnosed with ADHD. In addition to ADHD one student has also been diagnosed as oppositionally defiant, meaning he does the opposite of what is being said to him. He is the only student to have his own desk; all other students have assigned seats along three long tables on one side of the classroom. There is no teacher assistant assigned to this classroom.
The classroom is bright, with one wall being made up of windows, the others have student’s work posted. There are signs to remind students of the rules, the alphabet and numbers are listed and placed where everyone is able to see them. Two dry erase boards are on opposite ends of the room. There is ample cubby space, one for each student to place personal items such as a coat or backpack. The science area is home for ants at this point but has been home to many different species throughout the school year. The library area has a lamp with a rainbow of colors all around it and gives plenty of light to those who spend time reading there. There was no specific writing area set aside; the students are encouraged to write at their seats throughout the day.
My role in the classroom during this observation is not to be a participant, but a witness to how one teacher manages a class by herself.
The assignment I was invited to observe was a writer’s workshop. This assignment was a four day activity. I arrived on the morning of t...
... middle of paper ...
...the others that were working on their journals were doing. The teacher is in constant motion, never just sitting at her desk while the students were working on writing or reading to one another. I believe this says a lot about how involved she is with her class. She is sometimes silent when listening in on conversations and other times she is probing students to think a little deeper into the assignment by asking them open ended questions about what it is they were writing about.
This observation made me think about my teaching statement I wrote at the beginning of the quarter and how I might change my thoughts on how a classroom should look after seeing one in progress. The classroom is no longer hours of pencil and paper work; it is a vibrant learning space with motion and commotion, all organized and supervised by a caring teacher.
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