Monday, May 9, 2011

The Munchkins are Running! The Munchkins are Running!

Day 26 (61) - Monday May 9, 2011
This would be the final full week at Ridge Elementary School and of my student teaching experience in general. It is almost unbelievable that it went to fast. Nonetheless, it was my time. All of the classes this week were mine to teach. Ms. Hinton put the grade-book and President's Challenge score sheets in my hands and it was all me this week. I was very excited to begin the week. I have been looking forward to the opportunity to display all of the skills I had acquired. I made sure that we caught up on all of the testing that had already been completed before continuing any further. This would be the first day to introduce the shuttle run to many of the classes. Ms. Hinton modeled it for the first class and I went from there. I knew that for all of the students, repetition in both observing and participating would facilitate the knowledge acquisition. Many students had never seen the shuttle run so it was vital to go over everything. When it came time for them to practice, I was surprised at how well each of them was able to complete the task. I made sure to use simple directions so that they would be able to comprehend the material and it seemed to have worked extremely well. Even though the times were a little high, it is still early in the practice stages and the students have six classes of practice before taking the test. I will ensure that each lesson is meaningful and conductive to the improvement of their abilities.

Day 27 (62) - Tuesday May 10, 2011
As I sat there transcribing the times for the quarter-mile run onto the President's Challenge score sheet, Ms. Hinton walked into the office with a familiar face. My student teaching supervisor, Terry Phelan, dropped by for my final observation of my student teaching experience. We did not a class for quite a bit of time so we spent some time having a conversation about various topics. It was nice to have this time to talk as I rarely have the opportunity to sit down and speak with him face-to-face. As we looked at the clock, it was time for class. He would be observing a class with some behavioral concerns but nothing more than any other class. I introduced the shuttle run and allowed the students to practice within the lesson. It went rather well and Terry commended me on a job well done. For the last six weeks, I have been only receiving feedback from Ms. Hinton to improve my teaching skills so it was nice to receive praise from another source indicating my improvements with her. The entire day was not as easy. At the end of the day, the first grade class was acting very silly and not listening to directions. When we came in from outside, we sat in silence after a lecture on listening to directions. It is important to stop a class before things get out of hand. If you give kids an inch they will take a yard. It is very important to identify parameters to facilitate instruction.

Day 28 (63) - Wednesday May 11, 2011
To teach physical education does not simply entail the teaching of physical skills and their application. A physical education teacher has the same responsibility of any other teacher; to teach the students virtues and character. During one of the classes, we went outside to run the quarter-mile as we normally would. One of the alternative learning classes was on the playground at the same time. There was no problem with this as neither class would wind up crossing paths with the other. However, some of the children would laugh and make comments about the students also outside. When we came inside, I sat everyone down on the mat and discussed the situation I observed outdoors. It is important at Ridge Elementary School to combat bullying at all costs. Many students wear shirts indicating their commitment to the pledge. I told them that all children are differently-abled but that they are all the same. It is their differences that make each child special and strong and weak. I made sure to note that each student needs to treat others the way they would like to be treated. After letting this sink in for a few minutes, I continued with class. It is very important to use these teachable moments in class. It is critical for students to understand and comply with this topic to create a safe and healthy learning environment.

Day 29 (64) - Thursday May 12, 2011
The annual Ridge Munchkin Run would finally be held today in the late afternoon! However, before we could get to that, there was lots of practice to be held for the shuttle run in physical education class. In order to allow ample time to set up the Munchkin Run, Ms. Hinton moved two of the afternoon classes into the morning thus creating two back-to-back double classes, both kindergarten. It was my task to manage these classes and to get as many students as possible to practice the shuttle run. We had four stations therefore four children could go at any given time. After a review of the shuttle run procedures, we were ready to begin. I let two children from one class run on one side and two from the other run on the opposite side. I was able to get each student to run at least once. Those who were watching had the ability to note mistakes and were given the opportunity to speak of what they had seen. This was very important for kindergarten students are they need repetition in performing the task and observing the task in order to become successful.
When it came time for the Munchkin Run, the students were more than excited to run. All of the first grade classes, administration, and parents came to watch the race and that made for a very exciting and positive environment. Each student who competed received a medal and a certificate and were applauded by their classmates. Activities like this are very important to hold as a teacher. It brings the school and the community together in a positive setting. I am very happy to have been a part of the Munchkin Run and look to explore similar activities in my future as a teacher!

Day 30 (65) - Friday May 13, 2011
As we came to the end of my last full week at Ridge Elementary School, it proved to be a very light workload. The kindergarten students had a field trip to the Holtsville Ecology Center and therefore three of the seven classes today would not take place. I used this time to finish up transcribing all of the results of the President's Challenge that had been obtained thus far. In honor of my birthday, Ms. Rosenthal and Ms. Hinton took me out to lunch and we had a nice little conversation and bonding experience before returning back to the school. It is very nice to have colleagues who become friends as well as co-workers. It makes the job more fun and enjoyable plus you have a friend in which to confide in. As the day drew to a close, the kindergarten students returned from their trip. The last two classes of the day were filled with kindergarten children exhausted from their trip. Their teacher informed me that they walked over one mile just before they left and their little legs were tired! This was immediately apparent in physical education class; however, I immediately switched to entertainer mode and got them up and moving for the thirty minutes. They did the best they could and certainly earned a paw print for the day. It is very understandable that very young children can easily tire from physical activity. As the teacher, I need to take this into consideration and motivate them to do the best that their little bodies will allow them!

No comments:

Post a Comment