Field Experience 2
Field Experience II
Standards # 2, 3, 5, 6, 8, 10
April 8th, 2010
Artifact: Introductory Symbol Drawings, Lesson Plan and Reflection, EDS 450, Spring 2010
This artifact was created for a lesson that I taught in a middle school classroom to 8th grade students with cognitive disabilities. I chose this artifact to represent these standards as it shows my abilities to work with diverse learners in a well-managed environment which stresses communication between not only teacher and student, but also colleagues and parents. This lesson allowed students to express their creativity while familiarizing themselves with the idea of symbolism, a common theme in art. I also chose this lesson because it was a lesson that really helped me to get to know my students from the start, which I believe is very important in developing a strong teacher/student relationship.
I chose this artifact to represent my proficiency in these standards for a variety of reasons. First, this artifact shows my ability to work with diverse learners. The students that I worked with in this lesson are one age physically, but a completely separate ages mentally. To work with this, I individually assisted each student as they completed their art projects, through having a discussion with them, and also helping them think of symbols that fit their interests. (St. 2). I adjusted the lesson and worked with these students at their individual levels to help them all achieve their goals. As the students worked, I would help them to draw their symbols and make them as realistic as possible, for each student at their own level. (St.3) Additionally, through my use of both verbal, written, and drawn communication throughout this lesson, I show that I know a variety of teaching strategies and ways to communicate in the classroom to reach a very diverse set of learners. In the lesson, I not only talked to the students about their work, but also had them draw and label their symbols to incorporate various forms of communication into the classroom. (St. 6) I also feel that this lesson shows my particular flexibility when it comes to classroom management. I work individually with students while they complete the project, and keep them well managed, which can be very difficult in a classroom with special needs learners. As I worked individually with each student, I had to be sure to keep an eye on not only the other students that I was working with, but also other special education students who would occasionally wander the room. While managing both of those, I also was sure to do my part to keep the students on task throughout the period. (St.5) Additionally, I included measurable evaluation in the lesson, so that I am able to plan future lessons based on student success in past lessons. As students worked, I paid attention to their various levels, and tried to simplify/complicate their symbols to meet their needs (making the symbols easier for lower level students, more difficult for higher level art students). (St. 8) Finally, this artifact shows my incorporation of communication with the student’s parents and my colleagues as an important aspect in the project and helps to further develop my relationship with my students. In the lesson, I have the students communicate with their parents about things they like to do/that can describe them, and also describing what symbols could be used to represent each characteristic. (St. 10)
Overall, the lesson has impacted my teaching as it taught me the true importance of focusing on the learner as an individual person and using a variety of teaching and communication strategies with not only students, but also parents and colleagues. I learned to express my knowledge and passion for art with students while managing a classroom and doing my best to keep the students in a stable learning environment.
In the future, I will continue to explore new lesson ideas and reevaluate previous lessons that I have taught to be sure that my students are getting the best education that I can provide. I will also be sure to keep communication between parents, colleagues, students, and myself a vital part of lessons, so that I can further establish relationships with my students and understand their histories and cultures as independent learners.