Thursday, February 26, 2009

Lab C1 "Little Rice Bags" - Little Nervous

On Monday, I taught my biggest and longest lesson to the class. The class was given a Chinese culture theme, so we had to teach Chinese games while incorporating the culture. My game was called "Little Rice Bags" which is a game that simulates working in the rice paddies and works on coordination. I have to admit that I don't think this was my best performance as a teacher. I think I was pretty nervous as my transcript shows that some of the words coming out of my mouth got "tumbled up". Eventually I was able to settle down and the lesson did turn out pretty good. I just know I can do better. I think what really messed me up was when I tried to demo and I couldn't demonstrate what I was asking the students to do. First off I didn't practice myself and second I was trying to talk through the cues while doing the demo and that didn't help because the movement was so quick and I was trying to say 3 different cues in a second of air time.
This was the first time I filled out a feedback form for a lesson. My feedback was pretty good, but like everything else, there is always room for improvement. I mentioned everyone's name during my 7 minute lesson with the exception 3 students. However, I did give feedback to some individuals twice before giving those 3 students any. I also noticed that a lot of my feedback was very general, the typical "Good Job!" I did have a few specific and congruent feedback on the cues, but next time I want to give more of that specific-congruent feedback.
I'm looking forward to teaching this lesson again for the second time because now I know the flow of the lesson better and I know I can make the improvements.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Ultimate Frisbee! - defense wins championships Lab B

For my lesson on Ultimate Frisbee defense, we used an mp3 recorder to record everything I said which I thought is an awesome idea. The recorder records every "um" "ah" and in my case "alright". Writing the transcript and getting everything I said was so much easier with a voice recorder compared to writing a transcript from video footage. I was able to see how often I use the word "alright" which over time I have to try to avoid using it so much.
Overall, I think my lesson was fairly good. However, I will admit that having two students fight with each other during my lesson, startled me. My fellow classmates said I handled the situation very well but I could tell from my audio clip that I was flustered. I think I did a pretty good job of trying to stop the two boys from fighting. First I warned them, then put them in separate groups and when that did not work I had them sit out. If I could do it again, I would have put them at opposite ends of the gym instead of just changing one boy with a group right next to the original group. I was still able to give feedback and use intratask variation but it was definitely harder trying to hit those points while trying to stop two students from fighting. I wish I gave more feedback and was able to spend more time with other students but I felt a little overwhelmed by the bad behavior in class. However, this is a good thing because situations like this will definitely happen in the future and it is good to get practice with it now. Feel free to take a listen and let me know some of your thoughts.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Paul Alexander - Cortland Grad and Cincinnati Bengals Assistant Coach Gives Back to Cortland

On Thursday night, I took the advantage of the opportunity to listen to Paul Alexander's lecture "Coaching is Teaching". Paul has been a coach for 26 years, of which the past 15 with the Bengals. In addition he has coached the NY Jets, Central Michigan University, and been a graduate assistant coach to Joe Paterno at Penn State and Bo Schembechler at Michigan. While at Cortland, Paul was a Academic All-American in football and graduated cum laude. Paul is an excellent example of how hard work and determination can lead to high levels of success.
Check out what I picked up on from his lecture by clicking here.

Lab A2 - Teaching Soccer 2nd Time Around

On Monday, I retaught my soccer lesson on the push pass. Overall I thought my lesson was a big improvement from my first attempt, however I think I still need to to get used to the "shotgun" method. My second lesson was planned better and much more organized. I had better enthusiasm and control over the class. I had a better demo, cues, visual aids, checked for understanding and my activity was better. Instead of being involved in the activity by being a student's partner, I was able to walk around, assess and give feedback. My feedback was a huge improvement, I was able to give individual feedback that was simple, specific and congruent to the task to several students. I was also able to use intratask variation by seeing how the students were doing and adjust the activity for them. I didn't have to simplify the activity for anyone. I started off asking a few students to try their weak foot and eventually the whole class was able to try their weak foot. I realized that I forgot to mention a safety statement and pinpoint which I planned on doing but I think I left them out because the "shotgun" method is still new to me.
On Wednesday, we went over the time coding sheet which I used for this lesson. By doing the time coding sheet I saw how much time my lesson is instruction, management, activity or waiting time. My instruction and management time were a little longer than they should have been and the activity time was a little short. If I can fix those problems my lesson will be more efficient and beneficial for the students.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Need for Feedback

Teacher feedback is a necessity when teaching and I completely forgot to give individual feedback during my first lesson. Feedback lets students know that their teacher is there and watching what they are doing. Feedback keeps students on track and can motivate them to do better or keep up the good work. Feedback should be specific, congruent with the task, cues or skill being taught, relatively simple and mostly positive or neutral. There are tree types of feedback, positive, neutral and negative. Individuals respond to the 3 types of feedback differently so it is important for the teacher to know his/her students and what type of feedback works for each student. Even if some individuals are motivated by negative feedback, the majority of feed back in the phys ed class room should be positive and neutral. I gave general feedback to the entire class but my lesson would have been more effective if I gave individual feedback. Individual feedback gives off the impression that the teacher really cares about the students' development and makes students feel better when they hear that they are doing a good job. I know from now on that I have to give individual feedback and make sure everyone in the class is getting individual feedback instead of a select few.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

After a few weeks of learning the "Basics of Effective Instruction in P.E." and writing the transcript of my first day teaching video I've noticed several elements that were missing from my first lesson in soccer passing and trapping. After learning the physical education pedagogy, I will be the first to say that my first day teaching lesson was not as effective as it could have been. For starters, the transcript seems very simple. I already know that I should have said more, used cues, motivated the students, checked for understanding, I didn't pinpoint, use intratask variation and more. Secondly, I hardly gave any individual attention to the students. With the exception of one tiny line, everything I said was directed to the entire class. I should have gave comments and feedback to individuals. I kept saying "try that" or "continue that" when I should have been more specific in what I was asking of my students. After watching the video again and then writing the transcript, I felt like my lesson was a dull performance. However, I have already taught another lesson and I made strong improvements. I feel like I have learned so much already in only 3 weeks which amazes me. I am even more excited that it has only been 3 weeks and I have so much more to learn and to look forward to. I can use this video to see what was missing and eventually look back to see how much I improve!