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Reflection

For the original lesson I planned and prepared to be successful, I had to quickly adjust
and adapt to unforeseen circumstances that was beyond my control. This lesson should have
been the second lesson to a series of lessons pertaining to magnets. However, due to school
cancelations and delays because of inclement weather this lesson had to be adjusted to
incorporate the complete introductions of magnets to this second grade class. Before delving
into this particular lesson, students were introduced to magnets by conducting a scavenger hunt
around the classroom to search for items that were magnetic and for items that were not
magnetic. Each student was given a magnet to use to explore the room. After the scavenger hunt
was concluded, students returned to their seats and a class discussion took place regarding
magnetic and non-magnetic items. The students began to question why some types of metals
were magnetic but other types were not. For example, the metal legs of the student desks were
magnetic. However, the metal handles on the cabinets were not. Students concluded that items
that were not made out of metal were not magnetic and that some but not all metal items were
magnetic.
After formally introducing students to magnets, I began the lesson that was originally
planned. This lesson was a whole class instruction that incorporated group work to investigate
what type of items are magnetic and not magnetic, as well as the reaction magnets have when
they are in close proximity to other magnets. More specifically the ability to make objects move
without physically touching them. This was an inquiry-based lesson; therefore, students were
performing experiments to test their hypothesis, asking and answering questions, and testing
solutions to gain a better understanding of magnets. Not only were students introduced to
magnets in this lesson, but they were also introduced to the concept of making a hypothesis.
Before beginning the lesson, students were separated into heterogeneous groups with
three students per group for the entire lesson. There were six equal groups in the classroom after
students were separated into groups. Before separating students into their groups and assigning
them to specific areas of the classroom, the rules for working in groups were reviewed. This is a
second grade class therefore; students need constant reminders to stay on task and to allow each
group member to participate in the experiments. Furthermore, to transition from one experiment
to the next required students to have a clear understanding of what was expected from the teacher
during transitional times.
Previously, the cooperating teacher discussed with me that the students had not been
introduced to the word hypothesis. Knowing that this lesson required that students make a
hypothesis, before conducting the experiments I introduced the word hypothesis to the class and
explained the meaning of the word. After students had a clear understanding of the word, I
introduced the pyramid base that housed the donut magnet attached by a piece of yarn that would
be used for the Magic Magnet experiments.
Students were engaged while conducting the experiments. They were focused on the
task at hand and they were excited about learning and manipulating the bar magnets to make the
donut magnet react in a variety of ways as we worked through the four aforementioned
experiments discussed in the instructional strategies. After each experiment, as a class we
discussed what happened and how the donut magnet reacted. I tried to ask probing questions to
help students gain deeper knowledge of how magnets work. After reflecting back on the
questions I asked, I feel like I need to improve my ability to ask the correct questions to better
guide students understanding. Having the ability to properly question students to guide their

learning in essential to the learning process. After conducting all of the Magic Magnet
experiments and discussing their hypothesis, I moved on to the next activity.
The next activity was also hands-on and students worked in the same groups as they were
in for the Magic Magnet experiments. Transitioning to this next activity was a challenge since
I had not planned a procedure for collecting the material used for the previous experiment. After
overcoming collecting the materials and getting students back on task, I passed out the materials
needed for the next activity. As students worked in groups to separate the items in their bag into
magnetic or not magnetic columns, I circulated the room asking students questions about their
reasoning for placing particular items in each section, the similarities of the items in each
column, and the differences of the items in each column. During this time, I noticed that one
group had formed a new column for items that they were puzzled by. I also noticed that some
students were using prior knowledge gained from the scavenger hunt to determine which column
to place their items. This made me proud to see students progress in their knowledge of
magnets. After allowing ample time for students to make predictions about their items, test their
items, and collect the data I began to allow students to make real world connections to magnets
by asking students how magnets are used in their everyday lives. Students quickly mentioned
how magnets were used in their classroom for the lunch count and how magnets were found on
most everyones refrigerators in their homes.
This lesson was fun to teach. However, due to time constraints and other unforeseen
circumstances I was not able to teach the entire lesson that I had planned. Adjusting and making
adaptations to your lessons is a big part of being a teacher since all types of situations and
circumstances arise in the classroom. I was able to find an appropriate stopping point in the
middle of the lesson just in time for students to be dismissed for lunch.
Another situation that I felt was a challenge while teaching this lesson was the fact that
the teacher uses classroom Dojo. This was an issue for me because to have the ability to take
away points or to add points to the students individual Dojo page I had to use my cooperating
teachers cell phone. To take a point or to add a point required me to take the time to search for
the childs name, at this point I still do not know every childs name, record the reason the point
was being added or deducted, and then close the page. Since I am not very familiar with this
program, I felt intimidated by it and did not use it to help with classroom management issues. I
counted backwards to get the students attention during the transitions. This worked well,
however it is not my preferred method to use in the classroom. Before teaching my next lesson, I
think it will be imperative to work with classroom Dojo more.
In conclusion, I felt like my lesson went well. I understand with more practice I will
become more comfortable in the role of a teacher and the more I reflect upon my lessons and the
experiences in my clinical class I will become a better teacher. It was very gratifying to have my
cooperating teacher praise me on my lesson and to ask if it would be fine for the entire second
grade to use my ideas for introducing magnets with the students.