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Aleatra Nading EDUC 390 2/27/13 Shadowing Experience Date: Tuesday, February 26, 2013 Teacher: Mrs.

Bentzen Schedule: A/A 7:50-8:07 1st Block 8:10-9:37 (Music/PE/Health) 2nd Block 9:40-11:05 (Core 1) 3rd Block 11:08-12:33 (Core 2) 4th Block 12:36-1:09 (Lunch) 5th Block 1:12-1:42 (Panther Time) 6th Block 1:45-3:10 (Core 3) Observation: On Tuesday, February 26, I went to West Salem Middle School to observe the 8th grade math teacher, Mrs. Bentzen. I arrived at 7:30am and Mrs. Bentzen explained the layout of the day and what to expect. It was a B Day so she had three 8th grade math sections to teach. I got to sit in on a team meeting in the morning with all the 8th grade teachers and then Mrs. Bentzen and I talked about when I would come back to teach a lesson to two different classes. She gave me a couple different resources to use while creating the lesson. I observed the same lesson back to back before lunch and then again for a third time after Panther Time.

Reflection: It was nice to have already been to West Salem Middle School once before when we shadowed a student because it helped me to become a little bit more familiar with the school setting. I sat in on one of Mrs. Bentzens math lessons when I shadowed a student for the day, so I was also somewhat familiar with the way she ran class. Jessse, Penny and I were able to sit in on a Team Meeting with the 8th grade teachers. It was quite interesting to hear the discussion of the teachers. Most of the time was spent trying to figure out where to place students for Panther

time. They wanted to make sure the students were placed in the correct subject areas, so they could get help on what they needed. I started to observe classes then once the meeting was over. It was definitely an eye opener for me to see a teacher teach the same lesson over and over again throughout the day. I was getting tired of hearing it by the third time, so I cant imagine how she feels everyday at the end of the day. I dont know if I would like having to repeat the same lesson numerous times in a day. This was also my first time experiencing block scheduling, which plays a factor in lesson planning. I can see how it is beneficial for a math teacher to have blocks because it allows enough time to review at the beginning of class and then teach a whole lesson, while allowing for work time at the end. Mrs. Bentzen said that students rarely have homework to take home because they are given enough time to finish it in class. As a middle school teacher, I would like having that extra time so I wouldnt feel rushed to get through an entire lesson. There was quite a range of ability levels in all three of Mrs. Benztens math classes. The 2nd block had two aids who came in to help. One of the aids sat with one particular student and wrote all of his notes for him. After the lesson was taught the aid and student left to work on the assignment somewhere else. I heard the aid tell Mrs. Benzten that it was just too overwhelming for him to work on it in the classroom so they were going to go to the special education room. Mrs. Benzten then told me that that student has behavioral issues and some days you can tell while other days you would have no idea. The other aid sat at Mrs. Benztens desk while she taught and then walked around to help students, specifically the lower leveled students. Mrs. Benzten pointed out at least five different students who were struggling and said that it helps out a lot by having the aids in the classroom. Her biggest class was block three and there were a couple students in this class that were struggling as well. I noticed that these students were in Mrs. Benztens Panther Time so they could get extra help on math. Her last block of the

day seemed to catch on faster than the earlier classes. She said there were a lot of bright students in the class. It was obvious based on the students behavior that it was getting to the end of the day because they were chattier than the other two classes. It wasnt that they were miss behaving or anything. She just seemed more relaxed with this group and I am not sure if it was because she knew that they wouldnt need the whole time to work or what. I was definitely tired at the end of the school day, just like when I shadowed the middle schooler. Mrs. Benzten and I discussed a time for me to come back and teach a lesson to two different classes and she gave me many different resources to use. She was very helpful and said that I could always contact her with questions.

Participation: I just sat back and observed during the 2nd block. I wanted to see Mrs. Bentzens routine and get a feel for the students. I stepped in and helped students during the 3rd, 5th, and 6th block. I would walk around to make sure students were following along and taking notes. Then during work time I would walk around the room and check in with students to make sure they understood the material. If a student had a question I would direct them to a particular section in their notes and then we would walk through the problem together. I would explain how their estimation should be pretty close to the exact answer. During Panther Time, I walked around the room and helped answer any questions the students had on the problems they were doing.

Classroom Management: One way Mrs. Benzten was preventive of misbehaviors was that she always had the students working on something, which meant there was no down time. She had everything laid out and very organized so the students could start right away. I didnt observe

any major behavioral problems in any of her classes. She had to remind a few students to take notes and stay on task, but other than that the students were well behaved. The atmosphere in the school was bright and happy. The hallways were decorated with students work as well as tiles painted by students. Mrs. Benztens classroom had numerous posters hung up about math. She had the schedule posted up on the bulletin board along with the classroom rules. The white board on the sidewall had the assignment posted and also what to expect during class. Mrs. Benzten would stand out in the hall between classes and greet students as they walked by or in to her room. I really like Mrs. Benztens classroom management techniques. It was evident that she demonstrated and explained what was expected of the students at the beginning of the year. She was always prepared to transition from one class to the next. You could tell the students knew her routine and were ready to focus when they came to her classroom. They knew that they only needed two pieces of tape to tape in their note sheet and that when handing papers up front that had to be in a particular order. This is how I see my classroom being someday. I liked how she started each class by having about eight comics to read. This was a great way to get students attention and for them to relax a bit. Then she would hand out a Minute worksheet, which had a variety of math problems for the students to review. It was a great way to have students keep up on some of the skills that were taught months ago. Her organization definitely kept the class flowing. I asked Mrs. Benzten if she had any particular accommodations or modifications for her students and she said the seating chart was a big thing. She placed students next to ones that work well together and the ones who need a little more help up front. Another one I noticed was that she hands out note sheets for the students to tape in their notebook and follow along with.

They had to fill in spots and different examples, but it helped to keep class flowing and so she didnt have to wait on the students to write as much. As I talked about before, during the 2nd block there was one aid who works with a special education student. It appeared to me as if he wasnt really paying attention while Mrs. Bentzen was teaching, but instead had his head on his desk. The aid really didnt force him to sit up or anything. She took notes for him and then they left to work on the assignment elsewhere. I did not see any differentiation of the curriculum. She taught every class and every student the same lesson. You can definitely tell that Mrs. Benzten has many years of experience. She exhibits with-it-ness in her teaching. She always walked around during work time to check with each student for understanding. Even if she was talking to one student she was still aware of what was going on around her. She knows what works with students and what doesnt. She said that note sheets seem to work the best, because students follow along better. It is evident that she reaches out to students to give them the help that is needed.