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Formal Observation Feedback

Rebecca Holzichter December 15, 2016

Social Studies 10:45-11:25

Shady Side Elementary School Grade Five

Observation Comments
Learning Environment
Students were encouraged to write It is evident that students feel
anything they knew about the phrase comfortable in their learning
Taxation with Representation. environment by the fact they were willing
to take a risk by writing their ideas, even
if they were incorrect. Your
encouragement was a way to support
Student to student interactions were You have established climate of mutual
positive. Students were using the Rock, respect where students were able to
paper, scissor method of selecting the work together to select their leader.
person to be their representative. Giving the students the freedom to select
their own representative was a sign of
trust in their judgement, thus creating an
atmosphere of trust.
Classroom Management:
Miss Holzichter utilized a variety of Your choice of positive ways to regain
positive strategies to gain/regain student student attention enhances the learning
attention; such as the call and response: environment. The flat tire is a fun way to
Class, Class /Yes, yes and flat tire, shhhh. get students to stop talking.
Prior to starting the lesson, Miss Continue to focus on the students who
Holzichter recognized the students who are meeting the expectations that you
were ready to begin the lesson. have set.
When a student was laying on the floor,
he was asked to sit up immediately.
A timer was used during the small group Arent we lucky to have the electronic
activity. timers that can be displayed for the
students to see? Giving the students a
time limit helps keep them focused, helps
you with the pacing of the lesson and you
were able to refer to the time when
working with the group that needed
additional guidance to complete the task
at hand.
Formal Observation Feedback

Delivery of Instruction:
Lesson objective was posted on the daily I cannot over emphasize the importance
schedule board as well as being of presenting and discussing the lesson
presented on a Smart Board slide. objective so that all students understand
the purpose for the lesson.

This was an excellent way to engage ALL

As a warm up activity students were students in activating any prior
asked to write what they knew about the knowledge they had on this concept. You
phrase, Taxation without provided some clues for students who
Representation. Students responses may have needed a spark to recall
were collected to be compared to their information and you spoke to students
responses after the lesson. who were having trouble writing any
information. In addition you encouraged
students take a risk and write what they

Continue to provide student the

Excerpts from the social studies text were opportunity to discuss, ideas with their
presented, providing some knowledge peers. First it engages all students in
base for the learning activity. Students conversation and the quality of the
were given the opportunity to talk with responses may improve with the
their table about the why Britain taxed opportunity to have input from several
the colonists. points of view.

Students participated in a Putting Putting ourselves in the colonists shoes

Ourselves in the Colonists Shoes activity. activity allowed students to be a colonist
They discussed in small group and and think about how they would react to
responded a simulation of being taxed on a specific tax. Using the tax on relevant
items from their life. items in their lives made it real for them.

Student groups were assigned a colony Physically moving the students to the
name: New York, Maryland, etc. and assembly helped students see the power
asked to come to the Stamp Act of a group coming together for a
Congress to present their point of view. common cause. This may have been a
good point to focus on with the students
Each group presented their point of view which would have reinforced your exit
suggestions on how to address the ticket question.
problem and an appeal to the other
colonies. Key vocabulary terms were Students seemed to enjoy the
defined to ensure student understanding: opportunity to express their ideas at
boycott and tar and feathered. congress.

Providing the students with the

experience of being taxed allowed
Students had the opportunity to vote on them to think about the situation faced
Formal Observation Feedback

their choice of how to approach the by the colonists. This was a motivation to
problem. Then they returned to excerpts see how the colonists acted in history.
from the text to compare their choice Returning to the actual historical events
with what actually happened with the was essential.

To conclude the lesson, students were Students were provide the opportunity to
asked to restate their ideas about respond in writing to the 2 questions, the
taxation without representation and responses were collected and the
respond to the How did British taxes discussed. Equity sticks were used.
lead to cooperation among the


As we discussed, your classroom management strategies are integrated into your teaching and
have become a natural part of instruction. Students consistently need reminders to refocus
because they are children. You are managing their behavior in a positive manner. The best
classroom management technique is meaningful, engaging learning activities that are relevant
for the students. Good job on that too!
The use of a timer is a powerful tool in pacing instruction.
This was an excellent warm up activity. Comparing the student responses about Taxation before
the lesson and after the lesson should provide some information on the knowledge gained by
the learning experiences you provided.
By providing the students with the opportunity to simulate the colonists situation, using current
items, they were able to understand the sentiments of the time. Thus making it more relevant
to their lives, motivating them to want to know how the colonist reacted vs their ideas.
Your use of the equity sticks provided you the opportunity to let students know that they all are
responsible for the posed questions. You addressed the one students response appropriately.

Formal Observation Feedback

Our goal is to engage all students in active participation in the lesson. The turn and talk to you
table strategy was an example of how to do that. When planning lessons avoid too many times
when the teacher poses a question and one student answers. When you used the equity stick,
you set the expectation that all students will be able to respond to the pose question. You
appropriately addressed the student who was unprepared to respond by asking, What did you
and your partner talk about? and the other student acknowledged they were unprepared.
Hopefully she learned that you expect all students to be prepared to respond.

This was an outstanding lesson that engaged the students in active learning. They seemed to enjoy
their opportunity to represent their colony. You are demonstrating the ability to make the learning
relevant for your students!

Christine Stockett

University Supervisor