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Blog Entry #9

I am still undecided when it comes to what exactly I want my career path to be. I would love to be a teacher but I am also very interested in psychology. My plan as of now is to become a teacher and do that while I continue my education in psychology. Either that or I implement psychology into my teaching somehow. Until I graduate I plan on being a substitute teacher so that I get a lot of time in a school setting.

I think teaching could be a great career choice for me. I enjoy working with kids, I enjoy making learning fun and exciting, I love making a difference etc. Teaching would be very rewarding for me. In addition to that being a teacher would be a big benefit as I am raising a family. With teaching I would be able to have summers off with my daughter, I could have the same days out of school as her, essentially I could just optimize my time with her while also providing for my family by doing something I love to do. 

The service learning component of this class has absolutely in…
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Blog Entry # 8

Are you making connections between course topics and Service Learning?  I am able to apply many concepts discussed in class during y service learning. Some of these include approaches to those that learn differently or those that are learning English as a second language. I have seen both of the teachers I am working with make efforts to accommodate each of the different learning styles and abilities of the students in their class.  Have you been able to articulate your own learning and understanding?   Yes, I have been able to make connections and even connect with students more effectively as a result of this course. I have found a great joy in the things I have learned.  Is the process of blogging helping you to think and notice things in your Service Learning?  Blogging has helped me put into words some of the most important things I have learned. I look up to both of the teachers I am working with and I am glad that I will have this blog to look back on and help guide me in my care…

Blog Entry #7

In my observations I see teachers striving to meet standards. I have seen this in the timing of their lessons, they have had to work through some things more quickly than intended to stay on schedule with the expected standards. This could be considered a bad thing but to me both teachers still ensure each student is in the best position possible to succeed and provides additional resources as needed. In my observations it seems as though math and science are far more emphasized in my service learning placements. It seems like these subjects get the most time and attention devoted to them. This is the case for both the 6th and Kindergarten classes. I don't see a whole lot of art or creative things going on. I see a few things implemented as part of a reward system of sorts. This was surprising to me especially in the kindergarten classroom, I expected to see far more of that type of learning. I think that teachers are under a lot of pressure to meet certain standards so some of th…

Blog Entry #6

In both of my service learning placements there is quite a bit of diversity. 

In the 6th grade class: there are many students that are currently learning English. This makes it difficult to instruct once and have it be fully understood. To compensate for this the teacher explains things once verbally, then if/when applicable she will do a demonstration and then even go to each grouping of desks and ensure that everyone is clear on the instruction. Fortunately there are many bilingual students in her class so often she will also enlist their help in explaining what is expected if the other methods are proving effective in that particular situation. When it comes to tests and things like that often the teacher will pull out a few students that need extra help with comprehension and gives them a verbal version of the same test. 

In the kindergarten class: there is slightly less diversity culturally and linguistically but there is a lot of diversity when it comes to the level each student i…

Blog Entry # 4

In my service learning I have seen many examples of the teachers using engaging techniques to help students be more engaged learners. The examples that stand out most include; the sixth grade teacher I am working with did a unit in science on insulators. To help the kids apply the things they are learning the teacher grouped the students and they all worked together to make miniature pool covers. After constructing the covers they then took the temperature of the water inside the "pool" every 10 minutes until they had three readings. The next morning they measured the water temperature again to see which pool covers were the best insulators and had a discussion about why some may have worked better than others.
In the kindergarten class I see engaging learning opportunities far more often. It seems as though for every topic they have an engaging component to go along with it. When the students are learning to add and subtract the teacher sets out different objects such as ac…

Blog Post #3

The 6th grade teacher I am working with offers choices often. If there is any free time she will give the students multiple options to choose from. For example if they have finished a test early she will tell them they can study for another topic, read silently, or work on homework. She also offers them choices when it comes to PE, she will allow them to vote for what game they play.

This teacher does a lot to make sure students feel safe and loved. I have noticed she makes it a point to not "call out" her students for poor behavior in the middle of class. She will pull them aside later and discuss it with them one on one. I think this helps students and teachers build a healthy trusting relationship because the student doesn't fear that that the teacher will intentionally use embarrassment as a tool to change behavior. The student will have a higher regard for the teacher, which seems to have been true in the case of this teacher and what I have observed. Additionally s…

Blog Entry #2

I am working with two different teachers. The 6th grade teacher seems to mostly use the behaviorism theory. She has a square on her white board that the students can earn points as a class through good behavior to add to everyday, once they reach a certain amount of points they get a reward such as a pizza party or extra PE time. Additionally she gave the incentive multiple times that if they could stay on task and finish their work at school they would not have to do the additional homework for that evening. Occasionally she seems to add in more of a constructivism approach through interactive videos and questions, but I would say that her teaching style and theory is almost primarily rooted in behaviorism. 

The Kindergarten teacher seems to really use a variety of all of the theories simultaneously. She will be conducting a hands on activity such as painting (constructivism), while keeping it exciting and engaging for the kids and easy to follow and therefore remember (cognitivism), …