Standard 7: Planning for Instruction

The teacher plans instruction that supports every student in meeting rigorous learning
goals by drawing upon knowledge of content areas, curriculum, cross
disciplinary skills, and pedagogy, as well as knowledge of learners and
community context.

In the winter of 2015, I student taught in a
kindergarten classroom at Garfield Elementary
School in Livonia, Michigan. During the duration of
my placement, I worked diligently to thoughtfully
plan and implement a mini unit of instruction, which
was centered on the scientific concept of motion.
One piece of the planning process was the creation
of a pre and post assessment. My pre assessment
was brief (as it was short and contained pictures) but
informative, and it assisted me in planning lessons
and activities just above my students’ current level
of knowledge to ensure that growth would occur. My
post assessment, which was also quite brief, assisted
me in measuring the gains in understanding and
knowledge that my students achieved after
completing the unit of study.
In addition to the assessments mentioned above, I
also chose to implement a KWL chart as a part of
my unit based on motion. This chart helped my
students and me to sort out what we already knew
about motion and what we desired to learn about the
topic. The KWL chart also assisted us in reflecting
and discussing what we learned through our
exploration of motion.
When planning my mini unit about motion, I worked
to incorporate varying methods of instruction and a
vast array of reinforcement activities as no two
students learn in the same manner. We worked to
explore components of motion through literacy,
experimentation, everyday examples, and
technology resources. I also chose to implement
many hands on motion activities so that my students
could truly experience the concept of motion and
relate it to their prior experiences.
As the unit progressed, I was constantly reflecting,
receiving feedback, and making changes to my plans
as my students’ demonstrated mastery or a lack of
understanding of the activities and information
presented to them. I worked to provide additional
reinforcement activities through learning centers that
allowed students to further explore the concept of

motion with physical objects. I feel that this
repetitive reinforcement helped my students move
past knowing and understanding motion, to actually
applying and analyzing the concept.
It took a vast amount of feedback, revamping and
planning to arrive at solid unit, however, the
revisions and effort I put forth proved to be well
worth it as indicated by the gains measured by my
post assessment and the reflection and discussion of
my students as we completed the “L” portion of our
KWL chart. The creation of my unit, assessment
tools, and activities along with the time I took to
reflect and tweak my lessons and activities assisted
me in planning instruction and lessons based on the
current level of understanding of my students. It also
assisted me in better understanding how to most
effectively teach kindergarten students.
I am now aware that exposing students directly to
concepts and skills through supportive and
thoughtfully planned activities will result in
successful student learning and understanding. When
creating units of study for my future students, I will
be sure to utilize the process of pre and post
assessment and ongoing reflecting and planning to
ensure that my students are able to apply and
analyze information rather than simply recalling it
on command.