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Lesson Self- Assessment #6

Name: Haley Williams


Lesson topic: Math: Rectangle Arrays
Date: 10-23-15
School/grade level/ number of students: Rawson Elementary/2nd/25
Name of Cooperating Teacher: Laurie Nicholson
Planning and preparation: Describe how your plan provided opportunities for active
engagement. How did you provide for the needs of diverse learners? Did you adjust your plan in
any way? Describe how and why if you did.

This lesson plan provided a variety of opportunities for active engagement. In the lesson
there were a couple of times when the students were able to get out of their seats, come to
the carpet, go back to their seats, and then come to the carpet again, etc. Just this simple
movement, which got students out of their desks and sitting, was a way to get them
actively engaged and focused on the lesson. Sometimes it is just too much for the
students to be sitting in their desks for an entire lesson, so I try to get them moving to
different spots to help with that anxiousness of just sitting in a desk for an entire lesson. I
had a group activity in my lesson where the students went back to their seats, made a
rectangle array and drew it, and then came back to share their results with the class.
Allowing them to create a rectangle array on their own, after we just talked about what a
rectangle array was, provided for a great time for them to use that brand new learning
right away, in a hands on way. It also brought them back to the group to do a quick check
of understanding of that new learning before they went into a larger/longer workshop
time. As a group I helped the students to figure out one of the first problems that they
would be working on in their workshop time. I used some magnetic paper tiles that I
created to make this a little more interactive and hands on. The students would be solving
their rectangle problems using tiles, so I wanted to bring that into the problem we did
together. Some students were also able to come up to the board and manipulate those
blocks. The work times and workshop times were also opportunities for active
engagement in that students were working with hands-on manipulatives and could also
talk and work with the people at their table.

In this lesson I provided for the needs of diverse learners by using some visuals with my
explanations. I had an anchor chart that clearly articulated what rows and columns are,
which was new to the students. I also modeled a problem from the students worksheet
for them so they knew what to expect when they went into workshop time. To add in a
little something for those students who learn kinesthetically, I created movements that
matched the rows and columns vocabulary. Students could remember that columns go up
and down, by simply moving the upper half of their body up and down. They could also
remember that rows go across or side to side, by moving their upper bodies from side to
side. It was a simple tool that students could use at their desks to remember the difference
between rows and columns.

I did not adjust this lesson in anyway. The only thing that was not initially part of this
plan was a fire drill that started when the lesson was supposed to start. This took about
ten minutes away from the lesson overall. However, I was still able to get through the
mini lesson, group activity, and modeled work problem. The students received a little less
workshop time, but would have the opportunity to continue working on their rectangle
riddles after lunch.

Classroom environment: Evaluate the ways in which you encouraged student participation.
How did you elicit student responses? How did you engage them in responding to you and each
other? Evaluate your plan for individual, small group and/or whole class work. How effective
were these different organizational techniques for keeping students involved in your lesson?

This group of students is always very eager to learn and to share what they know
already/have learned from the lesson, so there are always hands raised when I ask
questions or when I engage the students in a little bit of critical thinking. So, students are
encouraged to participate and respond through the use of some questioning during the
lesson to get a gauge of their thinking. I try to engage students in listening and focusing
by sometimes telling them that they need to keep their voices at a zero, but also by telling
them that I am looking for students who are raising their hands quietly. I always have
willing participants and constantly make sure that I am getting responses from different
students, while also sometimes engaging with those students who do not have their hands
raised, but who I know have something they can contribute. The students respond well to
one another at their table groups, especially if one student is having a difficulty, others are
usually there to help. They also work great together in situations where they are
comparing their work or double checking that they have done what they were asked.

This lesson involved the use of some whole class work, along with individual/small
group work. The whole class work was necessary in order to teach a mini lesson that
incorporated the new knowledge and skills students would need to acquire to successfully
work throughout this whole lesson and understand what they were doing. The group work
also involved some activities that would allow me to gauge student understanding as well
as allow the students to practice their new knowledge and skills before taking them to
work individually and in small groups. I think that having the students do a whole group
activity, which involved them taking what we just talked about in the mini lesson, and
applying it on their own, provided them with a safe way to practice that learning and then
talk with me and their classmates about it. This whole group activity also kept students
engaged in the lesson because they knew that they needed to have some type of product
to bring back to carpet. This gave them an expectation to meet, which motivated them to
do the activity. I also think that the small group work kept students engaged because they
had the use of some manipulatives (tiles) to complete their worksheet. The small group
learning also involved an instructional task that was labeled Rectangle Riddles, which I
think was intriguing to the students. This instructional task also matched closely to what
we did with our group activity as well as the modeled problem from the actual worksheet.
I hoped that doing those things with the students as a group would give them the ability
to understand the instructional task more clearly when they had to apply the knowledge
on their own.

Instruction: Evaluate your choices of instructional strategies. Did they have the effect you
intended? Were the needs of all learners met? What changes would you make if you repeated this
lesson?

One of the first instructional strategies used in my lesson was engaging the students in
activating their prior knowledge of rectangles. Remembering the attributes of rectangles
was key to this lesson, so it was a short review that I knew would be useful at the
beginning of the lesson. In the initial introduction I also used a little bit of direct
instruction, along with my anchor chart to explain to the students what rows and columns
are in a rectangle array and how that vocabulary and knowledge would be meaningful to
our lesson today. After going through that knowledge, I decided to let the students create
their own rectangle array and then describe it to me using the vocabulary. When the
students came back to the carpet after finishing creating their 6 tile rectangles, they
successfully described them to me using the row and column vocab. This showed me that
my strategy to provide an anchor chart, explain that new knowledge, and then let the
students practice it, was an effective choice. Before the students left the carpet to go onto
the workshop time I also did one of the problems with them from their worksheet. I
wanted the students to see what their expectations were going to be during workshop time
and what the steps were to be able to complete the worksheet they needed to do. The
students seemed to understand the problem and worked well with the magnetic paper tiles
that were created. I think that being able to do those two activities as a group was an
effective choice because the content of this lesson was brand new, so I hoped that
students would benefit from seeing the new skills and knowledge applied in a couple of
different ways as a group before they went on their own.

I think that the needs of all of the learners in the classroom were met during this lesson.
The students in the special education program had intervention during this math time,
which I believe helped them to understand the work in a way that was meaningful to
them. I had planned on going to talk to the aid, however, with the fire drill, I lost some of
that work time in which I would have gotten the chance to have a conversation with her.
However, I think that through the use of the modeled examples, group work, and direct
instruction with the inclusion of visuals, that the needs of all learners were met. I think
that the use of manipulatives and visuals are two things that this group of students works
especially well with, so the anchor chart was a good choice to use as a reference for them
as they worked on various tasks throughout the lesson and the tiles helped them to better
create and understand the aspects of a rectangle array.

One thing that I think I would want to change for this lesson would be how I did some of
the transitions into various activities. When I transitioned the students into the first group
activity, even though I explained what they needed to do a few times before they went
back to their desks, there was some confusion when they actually sat down to get started.
I then did a quick group announcement on what was expected, but still had to go around
from group to group to explain the instructions. I think that next time I would tell the
students to go to their desks, get the materials set in front of them, but then wait for
instruction one more time. This would allow the students to get a chance to see what they
are working with and have it connect to the instructions that I am giving. It would clear

up some of the initial confusion of what to do and it would save some time of having to
walk from group to group and explain the instructions again, several times.
Assessment: What assessment processes did you plan and how did they work? What did you
learn from listening to student responses, examining their work or listening to their interactions?
How well did your assessment procedures inform you about student attainment of your lessons
objectives?

In the beginning of my lesson and during some of the group work I planned to use
student response as a mode of assessment in order to gauge initial student understanding.
This mode of assessment worked very well during the beginning of my lesson. I had the
students do an activity where they created their own rectangles with 6 tiles (which needed
to be accurate in that they had four sides and four right angles), and then they needed to
be able to come back to the group and describe those rectangles using the vocabulary of
rows and columns, so I could draw their rectangle on the board. This activity related
directly to one of the objectives of my lesson which was, Students will construct
rectangle arrays and describe them in terms of their rows and columns. The students
came back to the carpet after creating their 6 tiled arrays and I called on several students
in order to have then describe their rectangle to me. Each student I called on described
their rectangle to me accurately telling me the number of rows it had and the number of
columns. Sometimes I would just ask the student for either rows or columns, and then ask
the class as a whole to tell me how many rows/columns it had. I also consistently
inquired with the students if what I drew on the board was in fact a rectangle. I used the
thumbs up method as a way to gauge the types of rectangles that the students were
making to see if they matched the one I had drawn on the board. From those student
responses I felt confident that the students had attained the goal of creating a rectangle
array and describing it by its rows and columns. I also collected the students drawings of
their 6 tiled rectangles and found that many of those samples matched the drawn
rectangles and many of the students had also labeled the rows and columns of their
rectangle.

I had also planned to collect informal assessment information during the students
workshop time from a worksheet and also from some anecdotal note taking. This
assessment method was going to help me to see if the students had attained the second
objective of the lesson which was, Students will interpret a description of a rectangle
array in order to draw it. Due to the fire drill, the students had an incredibly limited
amount of workshop time for this lesson, which also did not give me a good amount of
time to collect data on student understanding. From just a couple of minutes of walking
around and trying to help students I noticed that an initial problem was how to start
creating the rectangle based on the description. I tried to remind students how we did this
in the first problem that we did together. That seemed to help many of the students. Some
of the students also needed to have quick reminders of which ones were rows and which
were columns. Since this was all new knowledge, some of this behavior was expected. I
did not get to collect the students worksheets since they were not completed. However, I
do know that attainment of that second objective was a work in progress. Knowing just

that little bit from walking around for a couple of minutes, I may have done another one
of those problems with the group had there been enough time for that in the lesson.
Professional responsibilities: What did you learn from your cooperating teachers feedback on
this lesson? How will you apply it to future lessons?

For this lesson my CT noted how she liked the movements that went along with my
explanations of rows and columns on the anchor chart. I think that using a quick little
technique like this when it is appropriate and fits in well with the lesson is something that
I want to use in my future lessons. When the students are able to do something with their
body, like a movement, that helps them with the content, it is a tool that they have no
matter where they go, which can be effective. My CT also noted that another good way to
check student understanding or listening of the directions can be to have them repeat the
directions back to me. This is something that I definitely want to use with this group in
the future as I know that they sometimes have trouble remembering what the directions
are. I think that if I can have students explain the directions back, maybe once or twice, I
can see how well they are understanding the directions and how I might need to change
my wording, pace, etc., to allow them to understand more clearly what is expected of
them. My CT wrote that it might be effective to also tell students that they can have their
clips moved if they are not listening, or that if they are listening they will receive a paw
afterwards. Using this may work as a tool for student focus. I am going to remember this
for future lessons. My CT also commented on the effectiveness of being prepared with an
anchor chart and those tiles, in order to work through an example on the students
worksheet. She thought that doing that with them would be helpful when they needed to
work on the worksheet at their desks. I agree that doing an example/modeling prior to the
students doing the work on their own can serve as a way to clear up some confusion
before students do the work on their own. This is something that I know works well with
this group, so I want to continue to work those examples in with the students before they
do the individual work.

Reflection: What did you learn about student learning and assessing from this lesson? How will
it affect your planning for future teaching?

From this lesson I learned that student learning becomes meaningful through strong
explanations, modeling, and examples. In this lesson the students really benefited from
the introduction on rows and columns in a rectangle, working through identifying rows
and columns in a quick rectangle that I drew, before creating their own rectangle and
describing them in terms of rows and columns. Their success in creating their own
rectangle arrays and being able to describe to me the rows and columns of that rectangle
showed me what a benefit my verbal explanations as well as the anchor chart were. In my
future lessons I want to make sure that I have strong anchor charts that are easy for my
students to comprehend and that translate well to the work that they are doing. I also want
to be able to provide the students with examples to look back on when they are applying
the skills and knowledge of the lesson on their own in individual work. From this lesson I

also learned how effective student response can be as a form of informal assessment. I
know that this is not always an appropriate way to gauge student understanding.
However, this lesson required the students to give an explicit response (using the words
rows and columns accurately to describe a rectangle) which connected so closely to an
objective in my lesson, that I could immediately tell if students were meeting that
objective. I now know how effective it can be to plan and direct student responses to get
at a specific showing of understanding. For my future lessons I want to be able to plan
questions and thinking points that direct students to respond in a way that lets me know if
they are understanding the content of the lesson and are working towards attaining the
lessons objective.