Angel Rodriguez has been teaching 5th grade for six years. He considers himself an enlightened teacher. Colleagues often remark on his classroom management skills, ability to relate to all learners and his drive to know what it is that each learner knows and is able to do. Mr. Rodriguez credits most of his teaching ability to his understanding of how students learn. Each day before class, Mr. Rodriguez prepares for his learners by reflecting on his own teaching practice.
As the students enter the room he asks them to stand and repeat the phrase, “I am here today as an active participant and learner. I will do my very best to collaborate with my peers, give my personal best and discover new knowledge. Today is a great day to learn something new.”
- Why does Mr. Rodriguez credit his teaching ability to understanding how students learn?
- What possible benefits come from daily reflection on teaching practice?
- How does Mr. Rodriguez’s use of a daily mantra relate to verbal anchoring? What is its effect?
After direct instruction, Mr. Rodriguez asks students to get into groups. Mr. Rodriguez provides avenues through group work to tap into the individual modalities of learners. He assigns roles to each group member as follows: speaker, a note taker/visual aid analyst, a public relations reporter, and a time keeper.
- How does group work help to create a flexible environment and serve as an avenue to tap into student’s learning modalities?
After group work, Mr. Rodriguez asks students to return to their seats and answer three questions from the lesson on an exit slip before being excused to lunch. After lunch, he meets with individual students while the rest of the class is reading silently. During the meetings Mr. Rodriguez works with each individual student and reviews their completed exit slip to determine which concepts were understood and why. He then helps any struggling student understand the concepts.
- Besides the exit slip, what other informal assessment strategy could be used to identify what it is that students know and are able to do?
- How is Mr. Rodriguez creating a personalized learning experience?