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Laila Ali

Pre-Student Teaching
Journal 1
For the past week I have been in Ms. Shalhouts third grade classroom at Geer Park
Elementary School. Ive watched her teach various lessons in math, social studies, and
science. This third grade class has 16 boys and 9 girls, so my cooperating teacher has had a
few behavior issues in the classroom. Ive watched her handle these behavior issues in various
ways. She has a behavior chart where students have colored cards that they flip when they are
off task or misbehaving (green is good, yellow is a warning, and orange is a call home). I
noticed that the chart seems to work well and students are more aware of the consequences.
To encourage students to follow directions, Ms. Shalhout introduced a game called Behavior
Bingo. When the class follows the rules, Ms. Shalhout picks a number from a bag and crosses
it off on the bingo chart. If the students get ten in a row, then they will have a party. I think the
teachers behavior management plan is interesting and I plan to observe how well it works as
the year progresses.
This week, I was able to teach a math lesson to a group of students. During math
workshop, my cooperating teacher assigned me to a station and told me to reiterate the math
lesson they had the day before. The lesson was on telling time. Students rotated to my station
and I worked with five students at a time. There were several students who were having
trouble understanding quarter after, half past, and quarter to. There were also students
who were still confusing the minute and hour hand. They each had small clocks they can work
with. I helped students practice telling time and I explained some tricks they can use to
understand the difference between quarter after and quarter to. I really enjoyed working with
the students and being hands on in the classroom.

Laila Ali
Pre-Student Teaching
Ms. Shalhouts behavior management plan and the math workshop she implements in
the classroom are supported by InTASC Teaching Standards 3 and 4. She aims to create a safe
learning environment by making sure students are behaving appropriately. She wants students
to have fun and work in groups, but she also wants them to be safe in the classroom. She
motivates them by giving them rewards for good behavior and encourages active participation
by giving out candy to those who answer questions correctly.
The math workshop I participated in aligns with standard 4, which focuses on content
knowledge. The math workshop consists of various stations where students participate in
different math activities (addition, subtraction, telling time, and reading graphs). Students are
reviewing many math concepts that they have learned about in class. It gives students a
chance to practice their math skills and it cements the information in their minds. The
activities are fun and educational. I really liked how well the workshop flowed and I would
definitely try this strategy in my future classroom.
As a future educator, I always think about how I will manage my classroom. It was
great to observe how my cooperating teacher handled behavior problems and how she
manages her classroom. It gave me ideas on how I could handle behavior problems and
reward students who are following directions. I hope to gain further knowledge on classroom
management as the semester goes on.
My participation in the math workshop really helped me learn more about how to
handle teaching a lesson to students. I was able to check myself to make sure I addressed the
math concept correctly and that I used the math vocabulary they learned in class. This

Laila Ali
Pre-Student Teaching
experience really helped me reflect on my teaching approach and professionalism. I realized
that each student learned differently and that I need to adjust my approach to reflect various
strategies. For instance, instead of just explaining the concept of telling time by using words, I
could have drawn pictures that would have helped the visual learners in my group. Overall, I
have learned a lot this past week and it looks like it is going to be a great learning experience.
Journal 2
The past few weeks have been a great experience. Ms. Shalhout is a great teacher and
I have learned so much about classroom management. The experience I want to talk about is
when all of the third grade teachers had a parent meeting in Ms. Shalhouts classroom. I was
able to observe the interaction between the parents and the teachers. There were some parents
that didnt understand English so I was able to translate for those parents. I explained the
behavior management system in Arabic and what they should expect their students to bring
home each night (homework, planner, books). Furthermore, I was able to translate to parents
about the NWEA district test students would be taking and how students should prepare for it.
I loved being so involved and it really gave me insight into how to keep parents involved in
their childs education. Most of the parents showed up (50 parents combined for all three
classes) and I really liked how many of them asked questions about what they could do to
This experience was really insightful. Parents appreciated me translating for them and
it felt great to be included in the meeting. I really liked how the teachers communicated with
parents and used terminology that was easy to understand. As educators, I think it is so

Laila Ali
Pre-Student Teaching
important to create a bond with parents and make sure they know they can communicate with
the teacher about any concerns they may have.
Ms. Shalhouts parent meeting aligns with InTASC Teaching Standard 10: Leadership
and Collaboration. The standard states that teachers are leaders in their profession and that
they collaborate with colleagues and parents to create a safe learning environment. Ms.
Shalhout took on a leadership role and reached out to parents. She wanted parents to know
what their students were doing in the classroom and what they should expect this year. She
had a very welcoming demeanor and she gave them the link to her classroom blog. Her blog
has information on what students are learning about each week and how to reach her if they
have any questions. Ms. Shalhout not only wants to collaborate with parents, but also
collaborates with two other teachers on lessons and activities. I feel very grateful that she
included me in her parent meeting.
This experience helped give me an idea of what I can do to involve parents in my
future classroom. I learned how to effectively communicate with parents in both English and
Arabic. I was able to see how Ms. Shalhout answered various questions parents had and how
she presented the material to them. I also realized the importance of having a translator for
parents who do not speak English. Its important that all parents feel comfortable
communicating with their childs teacher and that they all benefit from the information the
teacher is giving them. Also, I realized how hard it is to get parents to come to these meetings
and to make accommodations for parents who are not able to meet at specific times. Many
parents want to be involved in their childs education but are not able to because of a language

Laila Ali
Pre-Student Teaching
barrier or because they dont know how to approach the teacher. I really liked how this
meeting helped establish a bond between the parents and teachers. It gave them a way to be
involved in their childs education and allowed them to get to know the person their child
spends most of their days with. I hope to take what I have learned from this experience and
apply it in my future classroom.
Journal 3
This past week, Ms. Shalhout reviewed adding and subtracting three digit numbers.
She implemented a math workshop all week and students rotated through various stations. I
helped students answer questions in their math workbook in one of the stations. I worked with
five students at a time on problems using the partial sums method. I noticed that some
students understood how to add using that method and others did not. I reviewed how to use
partial sums to answer an addition problem and gave students who understood the material
challenging problems. I made sure each student had questions that fit their ability level. I
found that by challenging the gifted students in my groups, I was able to minimize off task
behavior. I really liked helping students understand how to add three digit numbers and
explaining the partial sums method. It was interesting to see how many students remembered
the method from the previous year and how many students needed extra help.
The math activity I did with my group aligns with InTASC standards 2 and 3:
Learning Differences and Learning Environments. Students are doing activities that are at
their own skill/ability level. I was able to recognize the students who needed extra help and be
able to help them understand how to add using the partial sums method. The other activities

Laila Ali
Pre-Student Teaching
are at various levels to accommodate different learning styles and abilities. Students who
understand the material were challenged to meet high standards. Students are able to learn by
working in pairs and are active throughout the entire workshop.
I would definitely use this type of math workshop in my classroom. I like how
students work together in pairs on various activities and learn math using games and
supplemental material. It gives students a chance to review the material in fun and engaging
ways. Students are not only using the math workbook but are also learning math using
dominoes and flash cards. Students get to move around the classroom and choose spots where
they can practice their math skills. I really like how efficient and effective the workshop is
and I would definitely implement this in my future classroom.
Journal 4
Two weeks ago, I taught my class a social studies lesson on regions. It was the first
time they were introduced to the word region and how it applies to Michigan. Before
beginning the lesson, I reminded students about the rules for answering questions and how
important it is that they focus on the new information that was going to be presented to them.
I asked students review questions on the information they have learned so far this year.
Students who answered questions correctly were rewarded by getting an orange cone (which
is equal to a piece of candy at the end of the day). I began by dividing Michigan into the
Upper and Lower Peninsula and then introducing the term region. Students repeated the
definition with me and then watched a video on the five major regions of the United States. I
told students to focus on Michigan and why geographers chose to divide states into regions. I

Laila Ali
Pre-Student Teaching
gave each student a map of the U.S. and we labeled the regions together. Students were able
to help each other identify the regions and find Michigan on the map. As an assessment, I had
students write down two fill in the blank sentences. I went around and checked the answers
they put down for both sentences and made sure students understood what a region is and how
Michigan can be divided into regions.
My approach to teaching the lesson was supported by InTASC standard 3 and 6:
learning environments and assessment. I took into account my students learning environment
and strived to make it a fun and educational experience. I wanted students to be able to share
their ideas and collaborate with one another. Also, I wanted to create a safe learning
environment and I did so by reviewing the classroom rules. The students in my classroom are
usually really supportive of each other and they know that bullying is not tolerated. As an
assessment, I used fill in the blank questions at the end of the lesson. I asked students to fill in
the blank for the following sentences: Michigan can be divided into the
_______________peninsula and _________________peninsula. Michigan is also a part of the
_______________________region. I walked around and checked each students answers. I
also used a quick question and answer strategy at the beginning of the lesson to assess how
well students remember information they have learned so far. I made sure the questions I
asked were clear and easy to understand. For students who had trouble with the sentences, I
repeated the information and tried to rephrase it in easier terms.
I could use this lesson in my future classroom. I used various strategies that could also
be applied to other lessons I will teach in the future. I learned how to command the students

Laila Ali
Pre-Student Teaching
attention and how to effectively manage the classroom. I realized that reminding students
about the classroom rules really helps. Also, acknowledging good behavior helps create a
ripple effect in the classroom and shows students a model of how they are supposed to
behave. I also realized the importance of using visuals and videos in enhancing a lesson.
Students really liked the video I showed them and were able to pick up on the important
information presented to them on the video. I hope to improve my classroom management
skills as the year progresses.
Journal 5
This past week, I taught a lesson on multiplication. Students began the multiplication
unit on Monday and I taught a fun activity on Thursday that helped review what they know so
far. I reviewed what multiplication means, and how to model equations in various ways.
Students completed two questions on multiplication for their bell-work and I brought them
together to the front carpet where I engaged students on their answers. I asked students to
show me the answer to the questions on the Promethean board and we discussed the answers.
I gave out cones to students who answered questions correctly in order to increase
participation and motivation. Afterwards, students worked on an activity where they had to
figure out the answers to five multiplication equations. The answers would help them build
their own unique monster by telling them how many arms, legs, and eyes their monster
would have. Once I checked their answers, they were allowed to start on creating their
monster. I plan to hang up their work in the hallway.

Laila Ali
Pre-Student Teaching
My lesson corresponds with InTASC standards 2 and 5: learning differences and
application of content. I differentiated instruction to meet my students needs. I used visuals,
technology, and a grand conversation to help students understand multiplication and how to
model multiplication using arrays and equal groups. I also described the information in
various ways to accommodate all my students needs. For standard 5, students applied their
knowledge of multiplication to answer the worksheet and review questions. Students
reviewed the definition of multiplication and then answered equations that helped them create
a picture.
I would definitely use this lesson in my future classroom. This lesson was fun and
students really enjoyed creating their own unique monsters. I was able to manage the
classroom and students did really well listening and participating in classroom discussion. The
lesson went really well. I was able to reinforce what they have already learned and apply their
knowledge to a fun activity. From this experience, I have gained more knowledge on how to
manage the classroom and how to effectively engage students in classroom discussion.
Journal 6
Last Monday, my teacher introduced a new reward for students who make the honor
roll and are well behaved. She had a pizza party for ten students, 4 students who made the
honor roll, and 6 students who did not make the honor roll but are well behaved in the
classroom. She acknowledged each student and then did something I found very interesting.
She asked the rest of the students to raise their hand if they thought they deserved to be

Laila Ali
Pre-Student Teaching
included in the party and to explain why. She asked students, Was I fair? It was surprising
to see that many of the students acknowledged that Ms. Shalhout was fair and that they
needed to improve. I noticed that students behaved differently when they realized they would
be rewarded with a pizza party every month.
This week, students presented their posters and PowerPoint presentations on
Michigan. Each student stood up in front of the class and explained information on the
population and geography of Michigan. They presented pictures, and created an advertisement
about Michigan. Students were able to research information on two cities in Michigan and
present the similarities and differences between each city. The only student who did not
present in front of the class is a student who is selectively mute. She presented separately to
the teacher during lunch recess. It was interesting to see how each student interpreted the
information and presented the research.
Ms. Shalhouts reward system and research project correspond with InTASC standards
2 and 5: learning differences and application of content. She uses various methods to teach the
class and accommodate learners needs. She incorporated a new rewards system that would
appeal to more students and motivate them to work harder. Students were reflecting on their
behavior and changing for the better. She used a project as a way to assess their learning of
the geography unit on Michigan. Students applied the information they have learned in class
to create a project on Michigan. For the students who were English language learners, I
created a separate project for them to work on. I simplified the questions they had to answer
and gave them a choice between creating a poster board or writing an essay. The project is a

Laila Ali
Pre-Student Teaching
way of assessing students ability to gather information, communicate their findings, and
create a unique poster board or PowerPoint presentation.
I would definitely use this type of project and reward system in my future classroom. I
would reward my students for doing well in class using a pizza or ice cream party. It
motivates students to do well and it rewards students who have been on task. I dont like
giving too many exams as an assessment, so I would create projects and activities students
could do that would allow me to assess their understanding of the material.