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Free Lesson Plan/ Observation or Evaluation?

The Psycho-Educational Teacher
http://thepsychoeducationalteacher.blogspot.com/

Content Area: Feelings and Emotions/Social-Emotional Literacy Grade Level: 3+ Objective: To discriminate between observations and evaluations Group Size: Adapt either for pairs or cooperative groups Time: 40-45 minutes Materials: A copy of worksheet, “Observation or Evaluation?” for each pair or cooperative group (attached). Also, construction paper, scissors, glue, and a pencil or pen (for each child or to share). Optional materials are chart paper and markers of different colors. During the discussion phase (Step 4) it is best when the teacher reinforces visually on the chalkboard, whiteboard, or using chart paper. Social-Emotional Vocabulary: observation, evaluation, conflict, disagreement Background Information: An observation relies on our senses (seeing, hearing, touching, tasting, and smelling) to talk about a behavior or an event. Observations of behavior are objective, describing what we see, hear, touch, taste, and smell. Observations are also neutral, that is, they do not judge in terms of good/bad or right/wrong. Evaluations, on the other hand, are always a subjective (personal) experience, and they strongly influence both the way we perceive and the way we interpret the behavior or event. Our evaluations are tied to our feelings, specifically what we like and dislike. If we agree and approve the behavior or event, we judge it positively, but if we do not like and/or disapprove the event, we judge it negatively. Each time that we talk about a behavior or an event as good/bad, right/wrong, like/dislike, or love/hate, we stop being objective and descriptive and we start making evaluations and judgments. Most evaluations are also personal opinions. Children need to understand that, to

handle conflict or disagreements between peers, it is important that they use observations of behavior, also known as observational language or facts. Procedure/Steps: 1. Use the background information to discuss the difference between an observation and an evaluation. Have children give several examples and “not an example” of evaluations or evaluative language. List the examples on the chalkboard. 2. Form pairs or cooperative groups and have each pair/cooperative group draw a T- Chart on construction paper (can be chart paper). Have children write the main title at the top of the T-Chart (Observation or Evaluation?), and under the “T” they write one sub-title on each side (Observation-Evaluation). 3. Give one copy of the worksheet to each pair or cooperative group. Partners/cooperative groups read each sentence strip and discuss whether it is an observation or an evaluation. Tell children to underline or circle the words that give clues of evaluative language (i.e., stupid, annoying, crybaby). Next, have children cut and glue the sentence strips under the corresponding side on the T-Chart. If children are not sure, they keep the sentence strip on a separate pile or labeled under a big question mark (?). 4. When all pairs/cooperative groups are finished, meet in a large group to share children’s responses and the reasons why the statements were placed under each category. Go over the statements on children’s “not sure” pile, and help them place each on the most appropriate category. 5. Have several students paraphrase (restate in their own words) the definition for each vocabulary word. 6. Have 2-3 students summarize the activity and explain what they have learned, focusing on when it is most appropriate to use observations of behavior. You can use these summaries to list the key information on the chalkboard, whiteboard, or chart paper. 7. Proudly display children’s T-charts on the walls.

Discussion Points/Questions: Discuss with children the benefits of using observation language (observations of behavior or facts) to describe conflictive events and/or disagreements. In addition, talk about the disadvantages of using evaluations or personal opinions. In particular, discuss how using evaluative language and judgments (e.g., “Frankie is weird!”) will not solve the problem, and almost invariably aggravates the conflict or disagreement. Help children find similarities between evaluations and opinions. Evaluation: Assess this lesson in terms of both shared participation and oral participation. Answer Key: 1. Evaluation 2. Observation 3. Observation 4. Evaluation 5. Evaluation/The first part of this statement, “Gregory thinks he is everybody’s boss” is also an inference 6. Observation 7. Evaluation 8. Observation 9. Evaluation/This statement is also a false cause-andeffect equivalence (Because I do not get fractions rights, I must be stupid) 10. Observation 11. Evaluation 12. Observation 13. Evaluation 14. Observation 15. Evaluation 16. Observation 17. Evaluation 18. Evaluation 19. Evaluation 20. Evaluation

Observation or Evaluation? Sentence Strips
1. Your new book bag is awesome! 2. Denise is wearing a cast on her right arm. 3. I spent three hours yesterday doing my math homework. 4. Only stupid kids never get fractions right. 5. Gregory believes he is everybody’s boss, but I think he is just a jerk. 6. After I told Gregory to stop pushing in the line, he pushed me too. 7. Our lunchroom is too noisy and crowded. 8. Frankie keeps talking to me when I am trying to read. 9. I never get fractions right. I’m so stupid! 10.Denise broke her arm playing volleyball. 11.Frankie is so annoying. 12.Ruben cried when Gregory pushed him out of the line. 13.Mr. Richardson has to be the funniest teacher in the universe. 14.William told the teacher that he saw when I ripped the library book. 15. Denise and I are best friends. 16.Letitia drinks her milk with pancakes’ syrup. 17.The science test was too long. 18. William betrayed me when he told the teacher what I did. 19.Stand up for your rights, Ruben! Stop being such a crybaby! 20. Letitia was cruel when she told Casey to stop laughing like a hyena.