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Peer Coaching

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Peer Coaching Exercise

III. Planning Conference

1. Where are you now?
“This week we are focusing on art and artists as it is the center’s theme. Today, we are learning about Mark Rothko and his art style specifically. He’s a painter.”

2. What is your reason for this lesson?
“It’s concept development. We are going to have the children describe some of his work and it will help them with color recognition, verbal expression and vocabulary development”.

3. How will you accomplish the above goals/objectives?
“We are doing an art activity which is related to the theme to further their development. At circle time, they will identify colors as I will show them his artwork through photos. We are using painter’s tape, construction paper and paint for the children to explore their creative expression. We are encouraging them to use their vocabulary during circle time. The children will learn from each other!”

4. How will you know when you’ve succeeded?
“I’ll know I’ve succeeded if the children participate and if they are able to repeat the colors”.

5. What concerns do you have?
“We have some children who don’t know the colors. I’m also concerned about wandering children.”

6. What do you want me to observe, to pay particular attention to?
“Pay attention to the children who are not paying attention. You can also pay attention to their different styles!”

V. Record of Observations

1. How is the lesson beginning?
Well, the circle time started off well as the children were sitting on the carpet with the two teachers. One teacher was teaching while the other was sitting with a child on her lap. As Ms. Rana was asking questions like what color can they see in the photos she was showing, the children were interactive and seemed engaged as they answered all the questions. She asked them to identify colors and some answered, “pink”, “blue” and “yellow”. They also identified the rectangle shape in the photo.
2. Are all of the materials being used?
Ms. Rana used all the materials she had planned to use and she was also very organized as she had everything ready to start the activity in a bin like the paint, brushes, tape and construction paper. I liked that particularly as I’ve noticed some teachers who are not ready with their materials and the children get disoriented if they wait at the table doing nothing.
3. How is the manner of presentation?
I think Ms. Rana did a great job presenting the artist and the photos of his art. She had all the information and materials required at circle time to share with the children and spoke slowly and clearly for the children to understand. She was very patient and asked them questions which were appropriate.
4. How are the children responding?
The children seemed very interested and eager to look at the photos of the artist. They were also very interactive. However, while the circle time was going on, one child had to go potty and another child walked in at around 10.25 am and the other teacher who was sitting with one of the children on her lap had to take that child potty and sign the other child in and then the child who was on her lap, started doing cartwheels on the carpet. He wasn’t interested at all and the teacher teaching got distracted.
5. What else are you observing?
There was another child with special needs in the classroom who had an aide with him who was walking around the room the whole time. The problem I observed was when Ms. Rana set the art activity, all the children showed interest and sat at the table. However, she only had 2 children work at a time while she had set up a game for the other children to play. The other teacher was helping them play the toss the bean bag game. A floater walked in and the teacher had to go on her 10 minute break and the children dispersed and started playing with toys in the classroom. There was a fight over a truck as 2 children were pulling it and Ms. Rana had to intervene to ask them to share and redirect them to something else. A floater walked in to break Ms. Janet and the children started wandering off from the game and were playing with other toys as the floater didn’t know what was going on. Ms. Rana asked the floater to help children wash their hands and ask if anyone has to go potty to get ready for lunch at 11.00. Ms. Janet returned by 11. am and took over.
6. How is the lesson ending?
The lesson ended well and the children transitioned to go potty and washed their hands as it was almost time for lunch.

VI. Post Feedback Conference

1. How do you think the lesson went?
“Circle time was different because they were distracted. I think the art activity would’ve gone better if we had more paint containers and supplies.”

2. Did the lesson go as you planned? As you thought it would? As we had shared?
“Yes! I think the lesson went as I’d expected as some children could identify the colors and did a great job with the art activity. However, I think it could’ve been better if some of them were not distracted doing something else and I wasn’t able to engage them.”

3. Would you like to see my notes? Hear what I think?
“Yes! I would love it.”
My observation: I told her I loved how she was ready with all her materials. I also liked how she had another activity planned for the children who were not at the art table. But, I felt instead of 2 children, she could’ve painted with 4 at a time, as the other children lost interest after waiting for the others to finish. I told her how I loved her patience with the children as she did not hurry anybody to finish. I also loved the art style.
She was quite happy and agreed with me about having more children work at the art table but didn’t have enough resources.”

4. If you were to teach this lesson again, is there anything you would do differently?
“I wouldn’t do what I did today but because it was theme related, maybe I would pick another artist. Art went good because it was open ended, however, the photos of the artist’s work was alright, nothing great.”
5. How do you feel about this process? If we were to work together again, is there anything you would change?
“I think the process was constructive as I received outside opinion. You were also observant of the children that I couldn’t pay attention to as I was helping other children. I would definitely love to work with you again. The only thing I would change is the time I would ask for you to visit and observe again. I would have you observe after circle time rather than the whole circle time and art activity”.

VII. Summary
1. I think the process went well for me. According to me, being observed by a peer leads to suggestions about how to handle behavior problems, as well as opportunities to share successful teaching approaches with the observer. Classroom observation describes the practice of sitting in on another teacher’s class to observe, learn and reflect. Various aspects of the class can be examined, such as routines, use of time, schedule, participation, teaching strategies, management strategies, learner interest, and much more. A teacher will naturally look for support on an issue that is difficult for her, but it is often a great method of being exposed to a new and different approach to teaching.
2. I learned to observe new techniques, strategies, ideas and resources. I gained insight into one's own strategies and techniques. I also observed children’s reactions from a different perspective. It helped create a professional learning community with the best interests of the children in mind. It also helped me with personal professional development and growth.
3. The teacher did not feel threatened as she is the lead teacher in her class and she knows that I’m the lead teacher in my own class. She was quite supportive and happy to have an opportunity to be observed by me and give her some feedback

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