Fieldwork Paper Observation: For my observation program, I was placed in the Progressive School of Long Island, located in Merrick. I was assigned to work with Kindergartners under the supervision of teachers Jennifer Frank and San geeta Patel. It was explained to me that the students at this school learn at their own pace, and that is what separates them from public school children. They are usually ahead of children their age, however. For example, the Kindergartners I observed were learning from first grade math text books. The classroom was uniquely set up.
There are no desks in the room, besides the teachers desk. Children sat at tables and chairs. Their books and supplies were kept in cubby’s in the back of the room called, ‘Responsibility bins’. For the most part, the teachers walked freely around the room instead of stationed at their desk.
This is called an ‘open classroom’. It was a style that was encouraged in the 1970’s inside classrooms. There were two large wooden lofts inside the room. Children can climb ladders and sit on top of them. There was also an art table in the back corner of the room.
The art table contained paper, markers, glue, crayons, scissors and glitter. Children were encouraged to be creative while in this area. There was also a computer area. The children are able to use them freely.
The games on the computer are educational and were made fun for the students. Decorations were hung all over the walls as well. There were posters showing numbers and the alphabet, which the teachers and children go over each morning. There were also posters of shapes, animals and colors. In one corner there was a set of classroom rules for everyone to follow, including the teachers. Next to the rules was a ‘Superstar’ chart.
Abstract Instructional practice designed to be effective in the mainstream-inclusion classroom environment must be one that is readily adaptable yet one that is sensible in its’ application in this unique and exceptional classroom setting. Although there are complications and difficulties inherent in teaching in this environment the ultimate rewards, as well as the daily ones are motivational and ...
Each child has its own monthly chart. They are able to earn a star each day. However, if a child misbehaves, or breaks the rules, they lose their star for that day. For every eight stars a child earns, they get one big star on the ‘Superstar’ chart.
For every three stars they earn on that chart, they receive a token prize. This is considered token reinforcement. The charts are sent home with each child every month. On another wall was an attendance chart and a collage of their pictures and projects. The children also had access to a bookshelf and a chalkboard.
The children arrive at school around 8: 40 in the morning. They assemble in the gym for morning announcements. The school holds grades kindergarten through seventh grade. There is only one class per grade. At 9: 00, the children are moved into their classrooms. The kindergartners do their school work in the morning.
Therefore, I was not able to sit in through the actual teaching parts of any class, since I did my observations in the afternoon. The rest of their afternoon is usually spent in free play. 12: 00 is lunch time. There is no cafeteria inside the school, so the children bring their own food and eat inside their classrooms.
There are vending machines in the building though, which the students have access to. there is a snack machine which contains potato chips, frito’s, and other bagged chips, bars, and kudos bars. The drink machine contains Very fine juices, you-hoo and water. For the kindergartners, at 12: 30 is free play. The children can sit alone, play on the computer, read, color, have snack or basically do what they please. Around 1: 00, weather permitting, the children play outside for a half an hour, to an hour.
When they return inside, they have snack together. After snack time is usually more free play. Approximately three times a week, a lady named, Ava, comes to the classroom to teach the children Spanish. She taught them basic conversational words. To help them understand Spanish, she plays a Muzzy cartoon each week. The teacher points out objects and the children say them in Spanish.
Play among children is a vital essentiality as it leads to social, cognitive and physical development among them during their childhood development. Therefore play among children is a normal routine that emerges during this period of growth. They get to involve themselves in humorous activities i. e. various games like hide and seek hide, foot ball, computer games, and several others which seem to ...
She will then rewind and replay the tape several times to help enforce new words into the children’s heads. She will also ask questions about the words they had learned the previous week. During my observations, I noticed that the children were very mature for their age, at least I had thought so. I noticed that during their free play, most children interacted very well with each other. For the most part, they constantly shared their toys and games with the other children.
They also had a tendency to share their snacks as well. The children understood that if another child wanted to play with the game they had, then they had to give it up to be fair. The children also knew to clean up after themselves. They knew to put everything away that they had taken out before they could play with a new toy. The reason why children acted so mature was because they were treated like grown-ups. The children were given the freedom to walk out of the classroom to go to the bathroom or vending machines whenever they pleased.
They do not need to ask for permission. The children did not take advantage of this, either. They did not leave the room unnecessarily or for an extended amount of time. Also, each week, the children were assigned to hold an assistant teacher type position. This child is responsible for the lights in the classroom, keeping students in line, and making sure everybody cleaned up after snack or play time. The child knew when to ring the bell to let other children know that it was time to clean up.
One other factor to the students maturity was how the teachers treated them. The teachers would let them sit at the tables with them while they ate snack. The children and teachers sat together and told each other jokes and stories. It was obvious that when a student spoke, the teacher took time to listen fully to the story. When children are treated with respect and given the chance to be responsible for themselves, they will act more mature.
They were also treated quite fairly. If a child disagreed with a teacher, they were free to voice their opinions. The teachers would take time to try to see things from the student’s point of view. The teachers also abide by the same rules that they expect their students to follow. Another way in which they showed maturity was showing their interest in schoolwork. The children often seemed anxious to begin a new unit or go over their homework from the night before.
People nowadays are busy with their own lives by spending much time on their gadgets like tablets, iPads and laptops including the children. They are either doing their job or playing games because of habit on the gadgets and forgot the traditional games. It is agreed to say that children today prefer to play computer games to traditional games. For instance, children nowadays did not participate ...
Also, the teachers are involved in the students lives. One girl had been sick due to dehydration. The teachers made a point to make sure that she was consuming enough fluids each day. They had water drinking contests to make it fun for her to drink.
The students had D. E. A. R time every day.
That stands for Drop Everything And Read. Most of the students spent this time concentrating on reading their books. There were several children who flipped through pages or only looked at pictures, but it was evident who was doing what. During outdoor play, children were able to play soccer, volleyball, football, tether ball, hula hoop or other activities. Some children brought paper and markers out from inside. Other children sat in the grass and enjoyed the sunshine.
The children were not forced into participating in any sports or activities. The school was much more laid back and relaxed compared to public elementary schools. When children return from outdoor play, they go straight to the bathrooms to wash their hands. Children also participated in show and tell. The children can bring in a toy or object from home for show and tell, whenever the please.
They explain what they brought and why. For example, one child brought in a toy car. He said he liked the color and he liked the car, soh is father bought it for him. The other children can then ask him questions when he is done speaking. Some children asked questions such as, ‘When did you get it?’ , or ‘When do you usually play with it?’ There is usually at least one show and tell each day. I also learned that the kindergarten class is raising money for a local heart foundation.
They raise money by donations for having the children complete simple motor activities such as jumping rope a certain amount of times, blowing up a certain amount of balloons or walking a certain distance during their outdoor play. The children seem to enjoy it and they understand that the money they earn goes to a good cause and that it is not theirs to keep. The teachers taught everything through themes to keep the learning organized. For example, the children learned about taking care of the body. Last week, their main issue was teeth and the importance of taking good care of them and cleaning them regularly. The children also know sign language.
The day was coming, my feelings were getting nervous, scared, more like terrified. Mixed feelings were coming alive in me when I thought about going to school also how I felt about experiencing a new and different life. At the age of twelve my life was shifted. First day of school came walking onto the campus it was a whole different feeling than what I was used to. New and different faces turned ...
They know how to make the signs for animals. One child taught me how to make barnyard animal signs. She also explained to me why the sign was what it was. For example, she explained the sign for a sheep, is because it looks like a person shearing a sheep. The children also know other words to sign, such as mother, father, sister and brother.
They know the signs for please, more and thank you, as well. I noticed children trying to make up their own signs. During reading time, two children were communicating by moving their hands and arms around. Since it is towards the end of the year, the teachers have been putting together a yearbook for the class. They have been taking pictures of all of the students, inside, outside, playing, doing work and eating. The children were then asked to say one nice thing about each of the other students in the class.
Some children said, ‘She stands in line good’, or ‘He plays nice’. The children were also asked many questions individually. One question was, ‘What do you like most about the Earth?’ Children have also colored pictures and wrote short sentences about themselves to be included in the yearbook. There were several conflicts inside the classroom which caught my attention.
First there was one boy and one girl in the class who were models. They boy y was also an actor. He was on minor shows like Sesame Street and he is a regular model for F. A. O. Schwartz and Godiva.
He left school early one day to go to an interview. The teacher told me that he does extremely well with his modeling and that he always gets call backs for his positions. However, he tends to miss a lot of school due to his ‘career’. She explained that by the time he reaches second grade, this will become a problem. Education becomes harder and more critical from that point on.
To What Extent Should High School Students be allowed to Exercise Freedom of Speech While on Campus I think that nowadays to deal with an issue of students free speech rights is a tough problem for High School administrators. The matter is that students free speech is protected by the First Amendment. Thus it means that students are allowed to exercise free speech while on campus. But what should ...
Another conflict was with one students family life. She did not know her father, therefore only lived with her mother. Unfortunately, her mother became terminally ill with cancer. Since her mother had become so weak due to the medications, the girl was forced to move in with her grandparents. To my understanding, the girl was quite close to her mother and the move damaged her emotionally. While she is in school she is often misbehaving.
She does not follow directions very well. She will not listen to the teachers and is not always cooperative with the other students. As a result of this, she is often placed in time-out. The teachers have explained that no matter what they try, she will not cooperate or work well with the rest of the class. Reaction: I like the way that the classroom is set up. It is very original.
I like the idea of ‘open classrooms’. Until my observation, I had never experienced this type of atmosphere. I also loved all of the decorations set up around the classroom. I think classrooms should look interesting and colorful, especially for kindergarten aged children.
The system of the stars and superstar charts seemed to work effectively. It gave something for the children to look forward to for being well behaved in class. The charts are sent home to the parents each month, so it is not just between the teachers and the students. It was positive reinforcement and I like the way the children get praised for their accomplishments. I think it is great how the teachers give the children full responsibility for themselves. They are free to leave the classroom whenever they need to.
Children left to get drinks, snacks or go to the bathroom without permission. I could not even leave my high school classrooms with out permission. This makes the children more mature. It gives them that sense of responsibility and I am sure that they would protect that right. The children are also treated how they deserve to be treated. When they disagree, they are allowed to voice their opinions without being looked down upon.
Children are never placed in time out for no justified reason. When a child was placed in time out, the teachers made sure that the child understood why they were there. I also think that the fact that they are taught Spanish is amazing. I feel that all elementary schools should offer some kind of foreign language program. Children are more susceptible to learning at younger ages. It is easier to teach a toddler a new language that it is to teach a high school student.
Advantages of changing the high school start time. Education is very important part of our life, so no wonder that our government focuses great attention on both: education process and the students being the integral part of good educational system. The modern school educates children with one objective in mind: their academic success. There are many committees investigating the option of a later ...
I wish I had the privilege of learning a language when I was in elementary school. I also believe that being bilingual enhances a persons Intelligence. On top of learning Spanish, the children also know simple words in sign language. This is quite helpful as well. I like how the children are raising money for a heart foundation. Apparently, the children were taught about it and they understand what it is.
I think it is good for children to be involved in community services at young ages. This will encourage them to be more involved as they grow older. I like the way that the teachers interacted with the students. They took time to understand a child and what they were going through.
They treated them as though they were adults and not their students. In regards to the children who act or model, I personally, would never let my child do that during a school year. I believe education is too important to be put aside for a child to be on the cover of a magazine. I would let them do it for fun, but only during the summer or breaks from school. I would never let it interfere with their educational or social lives, however. Children who are in that business mature incredibly fast.
Children need time to socialize and have fun. As for the child whose mother became ill with cancer, I would not know how to react to this situation with one of my students. I hope that the teachers understand and consider her situations before placing her in time out. I would want to be fair. However, I know that she would need to be punished if she misbehaved. On the other hand, I would want to be easier with her due to her family circumstances.
Overall I enjoyed observing at the Progressive School. It was a completely different experience from any public school I had seen. I honestly feel that the notes I have taken and the times I experienced inside the classroom will help me through teaching when I have my own class. I like the styles of teaching that the teachers used.
They acted more of the student’s friends than an authoritative figure. I learned so many ways to react to different circumstances. I agree with most of the ways that the teachers handled everything. I hope to teach in this type of environment in the future.