• Stephanie Yewdell

A trip down memory lane: Part eleven


Thanks to Facebook memories, I was reintroduced to my first literacy blog I created for a grad school assignment. I am going to be reposting my old posts here. They are a reminder of why I became a teacher. They are a reminder of how I developed my teaching style. They are a reminder of my pedagogical philosophy. Many of the posts I have reread, still ring true to me and are embedded in my daily practice as a teacher.

Originally Posted on "I'm Making Readers & Writers For Life," August 31, 2012.

And so begins the trials and tribulations of student teaching. I may be exhausted, but I will reflect here....

Following directions. Most people seem to not want to do that. Is it because they do not want to or is it because the directions are not clear? I am going to have to go with the later. Just like directions from Ikea, I felt that during the week my lessons were lacking a bit of clarity in a certain area. While lesson planning and thinking I spend extensive time scripting and thinking of what I actually would love to say and how to communicate an activity to my students. To me it sounds crystal clear. Then I start teaching.

While the lesson seems to be unraveling in front of my face, I know the lesson is actually hitting a speed bump. When explaining the directions of the various activities to my students I am often met with blank stares that scream “WHAT LANGUAGE IS SHE SPEAKING TO ME!” While recognizing this, I mentally try to take a step back and breathe. I know something went wrong. Often times, I will try and call on the one student who may just get my train of thought and have them revoice it to the class. I catch myself using adult words (I will not stop however, but challenge my students to figure out the definition) and then having to clarify what they mean. So I recognize that students will need clarifying, but even after a student tells the class in their language they seem to be lost. Could the students not be listening? Yes, but I know that one of my weaknesses that I must focus on in coming weeks is my clarity of directions. I do not mind having to repeat myself 4 times, but when every student has a clue what is going on there is an issue with what should be a simple task. As the week progressed students had a better grasp of what was being asked of them, which makes me believe there have been slight improvements. There are also some practices I need to keep students accountable with following directions, and it is not a check in their behavior folder. Patience is a virtue….I will get it, soon!

#Teaching #Education #Reading #Writing

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