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Kyndal Petrie

Teacher Interview from Megan Doyle


Planning Questions:
How do you write a typical lesson plan?
At Patriots, we work in our grade level, subject-level teams. We
look at our grade-level curriculum documents (that include the CCSS) and our
unit summative assessments. We then break down each standard and plan a lesson
around the standard. Each teacher finds materials individually, but we typically
share what we find. Each of us has our own teaching style.
What types of materials do you need available when you plan lessons?
The county curriculum documents. This includes just about
everything we need--Common Core Standards, County Materials that are
available, ideas for differentiation, and multi-media materials that one could use.
The county documents also include assessments.
In what ways do you plan to accommodate individual differences in
the classroom?

I look at the county documents for ideas, the students' IEPs and

504s, and I work with the EC team (EC teachers, PT, OT, and Speech) to plan
instruction and strategies.
How often do your students receive social studies/science instruction?
What social studies and science topics/units will be studied during the second
week of my clinical experience?
At Patriots, they work on a team in the fourth grade. One teacher
teaches three blocks of math, one teaches three blocks of ELA and one teaches 3
blocks of Science Monday through thursday and on Fridays teaches Social
Studies. Talking with the Science and Social Studies teacher, I was able to concur
that they would be learning about magnets and electricity. Tentatively, the class

will be finishing up magnets on the first Thursday I am around and moving into
electricity the next week. I have been given full freedom to teach the students
whatever I would like to teach for both Science and Social Studies. The week
before the intensive two week period started there was another student teacher
doing her social studies lesson. She did hers on voter registration. Since they
talked about elections and government a little, My cooperating teacher and I
decided that it may be a good idea to roll off of that and talk more about
government (the common core social studies standard 4.G.1). Megan Doyle, the
ELA teacher tries to incorporate some sort of social studies instruction with her
reading and writing instruction.

Instructional
Questions:
What are some of your instructional challenges as a teacher?
Meeting the needs of all students
and "fitting it all in" in the time allotted can be a challenge.
What have been some of your instructional successes as a teacher?
Being able to run groups so that I can fit everything in.
What do you consider essential characteristics for successful teaching?
Technical expertise combined with an artistic, creative flair.
What does reading instruction look like in your classroom (e.g. readers workshop,
basals, etc.)?

The county requires reading workshop. This includes a mini-lesson

followed by students practicing the skill from the lesson in their own independent
books while I pull students to work in their guided reading group, strategy group,
or conferencing. Students also work on word work and i Ready while I am
working with groups.

What reading topics will be studied during the 2nd week of my clinical
experience?

Nonfiction--What are the different types (narrative, informational,

biographical)
What are possible goals/objectives I could address for my reading lesson? Do
you have any instructional resources that would support these goals/objectives?
How to differentiate between the different types of nonfiction. Yes
I have resources.
Are you satisfied with the amount of time that you currently allot for social
studies/science instruction? Explain.
Yes, the students on our team get at least 90 minutes a week.
Science 4 days/week and Social Studies 1 day/week.

Classroom Management Questions:


What motivation tactics do you use to ensure a desire to learn?
SOAR, Red Rockets...
I use the Red Rockets cards as well as a team points system--each
table in the room earns points for being safe, respectful, and responsible, and at
the end of the week, they earn a prize.
Tell me about the classroom community. What are the class rules?
(are they written anywhere?) How is student behavior monitored? In what ways is
positive behavior reinforced? In what ways are negative behaviors prevented? Tell me
about the consequences for negative behavior.
The class rules are prominently posted on the wall along with
consequences.
Students earn a "letter below" on SOAR cards for negative behavior and may

have silent lunch or go to the office. For positive behavior, students earn "letters
above" the line and can earn prizes for good group work each week (Prizes
include Starbursts, chewing gum in my class, and reading log homework passes).
Tell me about the pacing of lessons and interaction in the classroom-use of timeand other aspects of timewait time, and time using teacher talk and student talk. What
works well with your students?
I keep to my schedule pretty tightly. At this point, I can pretty
much determine how much time something will take. I try to change up the
activity every 20-25 minutes, whether it is with me or whether the students have
to change up their independent work themselves.
I usually use wait time if I don't see hands. I might wait between 57 seconds. I try to keep teacher talk to a minimum and allow students to turn and
talk and work in groups as much as possible. I use a beanie baby to toss and this
seems to help student interest.
I think changing up strategies as often as possible keeps the
students engaged, however, you want to make sure that you are clear about the
rules for the activity so that you and the students do not get frustrated and/or
waste time.

My Reflection:
From what I can tell, the students on Ms. Doyles team understand what is expected of them. Ms.
Doyle has many answers and knows different techniques to teaching many different subjects in
ELA. She does a very good job using her five days every week with her students making the best
of their time. Many teachers forfeit teaching social studies or find it hard to make time for
instruction. Ms. Doyle took the role of ELA teacher to the next level; everyday she ties a piece or
more to a social studies topic while still giving them the proper ELA skills. I hardly saw major

disciplinary actions. However, minor actions took place quite frequently. Students carry around
behavior cards where they are marked below line for poor behaviors. On the positive side of
that, they are marked above the line for good behaviors. I think this is a very effective behavior
management skill. Students need to be reprimanded for positive and negative behaviors. Over
all, I took in what Ms. Doyle had to offer to me and I used it throughout my clinical.