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Professor Reilly

Mini Lesson Reflection
August 31, 2015
When this assignment was initially presented we were faced with many challenges. The first
instruction was to think of a topic to teach in three to four minutes off the top of our heads. This
required us to choose partners and collaborate creative ideas on what to teach. Next, you further
complicated the instructions by restricting our lesson via language barrier. There were many challenges
that I encountered with my group as both the teacher, as well as the student.
While my group was presenting our lesson to the class, we were advised to verbally
communicate using only the Spanish language. Considering, the rest of my group and I knew little to
no Spanish, we became extremely dependent on visuals and body language. The first obstacle we had
to overcome was communicating to the class with little to no spoke language. The communication as
well as the comprehension level became much more difficult to obtain. In our lesson we taught the
class “How to Take a Selfie”. We spoke few phrases in Spanish however, we were limited because of
the language barrier. Throughout most of the lesson we relied on body language; hand gestures, facial
expressions, etc.
When I was sitting in the audience as the student, I felt it was extremely difficult, to near
impossible, to try and comprehend what they were saying relying soley on spoken language. I became
extremely reliant on picking up facial expressions as well as hand gestures.
I believe that this exercise was a phenomenal jumpstart to this class. It completely forced the
entire class out of their comfort zone and simulated what it would be like to teach an English Language
Learner. On the flip side we also got to see how challenging it would be to learn if you were an English
Language Learner.

This exercise demonstrated a few learning opportunities. Although it is extremely difficult to
communicate to a child when you do not know their native language, it is not impossible. There and
many different creative manipulatives and aids such as visuals and body language to check for
understanding to help students feel welcomed and included in your classroom. These alternatives to
spoken language are also tremendously beneficial for all students in the classroom. Learning through
experience is one of the most effective ways in which children learn. Not only are the students engaged,
they also make sense of experiences using their own schemata, therefore enhancing their learning