The beginning of student teaching…
I’m at Seattle Lutheran High School in West Seattle with Deb Hook. The classes I will be teaching are 2 sections of 9th grade World History and 2 sections of 11th grade U.S. History. Deb also has a period of AP English, which I do not teach; I plan on visiting some other classrooms during that time to see what the other Social Studies teachers are up to.
One of the things that really strikes me about her classes is the fact that she has clearly gone over classroom procedures and expectations and holds students accountable to them. Students do not have a seating chart, and that seems to work fairly well.
On days where the teacher is lecturing, students are expected to take notes. Several students with 504 plans are provided with an outline of notes where they fill in some blanks.
A good amount of the students choose to participate in class discussions. Most of this is done without raising hands; for several of the classes this works well. The world history classes have a lot more talking in them, and they have to be reminded to raise their hand when they sometimes talk too much.
Students are expected to be prepared when they arrive in class. They should have their textbooks with them. If a student comes to class and is missing their textbook (and they need their textbook for class) they may return to their locker, but they will be marked tardy if they are not back before the bell rings. This encourages them to be ready for class and responsible for their supplies.
All lessons include a “lesson objective” that students are read. (I found out that this is something that is done department-wide.)
This week I took the time to get familiar with the classroom and school policies as well as the layout of the building. (I guess I was already slightly families with the layout back from my middle school days of using the school’s gym for PE.) This was also a great chance to see the way that different students interact with one another; I think it gives me a valuable perspective for once I’m actually in front of the class teaching.