Tuesday, December 10, 2013

That's All Folks.

As the semester has come to close, so does my blogging for my Social Studies Methods Class. This semester as been a roller coaster experience learning about so many different things. In the beginning of the semester I was so nervous taking this class because I had heard it was a lot of work and most of the work was challenging. One of my friends who previously took this class told me that you will know by the end of the class if teaching is really for you. Well teaching is for me. I enjoyed learning about different ways to use technology in the classroom as well as different lessons to use in the classroom.  One of my favorite things I learned this semester was using Prezi instead of using PowerPoint I think this is more interactive to use with the students in the classroom. I also learned a lot of different interactive quizzes to use with the students such as Kahoot. I think this is a great quiz to use with students because they can do in within a group or individually. A teacher could use this as a pre-assessment activity or after finishing a topic as a post-assessment activity.

Teaching the second grade at Bishop Dunn this semester taught me a lot about the teacher I would like to become. I learned to always project my voice and use proper academic language within the classroom. For example I learned to say Boys and Girls instead of saying you guys. This is something that many people struggle with and say on a daily basis. It is important to make sure that a teacher addresses the students properly within the classroom. I loved being able to teach an entire class. This experience has made me more excited to have my own classroom. Watching my peers teach the classroom made it easy for me to reflect on what I do in the classroom verses what my peers do while teaching. Getting feedback from my peers and teacher is something that will help me grow to become the best teacher I can be.

There are so many things that teachers can start using in the classroom. In my future Social Studies classroom, I would love to have the students do more things using technology. Students can do more research based projects using computer or IPads if available. Technology is going to be present in all classrooms in the future and I am happy to be a part of the future of education. I would also like to incorporate more Current Events within my future Social Studies classroom. It is important for students to know what is going on in the world and I think it is often forgotten by many teachers. Social studies should not be just what is in the textbook is read out loud. There are so many things that teachers can do to make Social Studies come alive in the classroom and make it more interesting to students. Social Studies was always my favorite subject in school which is why I am a History major at the Mount. I hope to make Social Studies one of my students favorite subject.

Good Luck to all of my peers in the rest of their education classes at the Mount and in their future careers. It has been a pleasure to work with my group and all of my classmates. I will never forget my experiences in this class because this is only the beginning of where my teaching will go. Thank you to Dr. Smirnova for showing us there are so many possibilities in education but its up to us to use them. Happy Holidays!

Saturday, December 7, 2013

So many questions, not enough answers!

Yesterday in class, we did mock interviews for a teaching position. At first I did not know how these mock interviews would go. I was not sure what question our "principals" would ask, or how it would be. I was nervous about the types of questions that I would be asked. My biggest fear was that I would now know what the principal would be asking me. I actually think I handled the questions that were asked to me very well. One of the questions that I was asked was about how I would I get students involved in the classroom. My answer to this was that I would have all of my students participate in different warm up activities such as a SMART board activity. Hearing my peers answers to some of the questions was also beneficial because I was able to see their opinions on specific topics and how they would answer a particular question.  I think this experience was very eye opening because many schools do have different approaches to teaching and it is important to be familiar with all of the approaches.  This experience will help me in the next couple of years as I go on job interviews for real teaching positions.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

What's going on in the world?

I think current events is very important when it comes to Social Studies. It is important for students to know what is going on in the world. When I was in the fourth grade, we did current events every Friday. This was a great thing to do because it got my class more interested in what was going on in the news. Our teacher would give us bonus points if we wrote a paragraph on something that was going on in the news. This served as a motivation for researching what was going on. Another current event experience I had in the classroom was from History.com. Every day they post a video called “This day in history.” The video shows what has happened on the particular day throughout history. This is a great way to introduce current events to students and get them interested in what is going on in the world. This video would be more appropriate to use with a higher grade such as fifth or sixth grade. Another way to use this website would be to have the students do a project on what happened historically on their birthday. This is a great way for students to learn more about history and it is something they can relate to. I think this would be a great project for students to do to get them more interested in the subject. 
 For a younger grade such as first or second a good way to get students involved with current events would be to use the newspaper for reading. Something I got from the current events in the elementary classroom was that a teacher could use the cover of newspaper to have students look for words. When the students learn about nouns, the teacher could have the students look through the front page of the paper and highlight all of the nouns they can find. This would get the students more aware of newspapers and what are found in the papers.

There is a difference between what can be done with the different grades with current events. Since it is hard to control what the students see in the newspaper.  As a teacher I would use a website for the students to learn about the current events such as Time for Kids. This website puts up kid friendly articles and even articles written by kids. I think this website would be a great way to get kids familiar with technology and current events. One the website there is also a part that shows the teacher how to use current events in the classroom using common core standards.  This is very helpful for teachers. It shows graphic organizers and other helpful tools that will ensure the teacher is meeting the common core standards.
Check out my links and tell me what you think! 

Monday, November 18, 2013

New York Native American Tribes, Who knew?

There are so many things I learned about Native Americans today in class. Many of tribes had similar features such as the houses many lived in were longhouses. My tribe was the Mohawks. I knew a lot about this tribe because I feel it is a very popular tribe to study. There were some things I did not know such as that the women in the tribe did a lot of the voting for the council representatives.  I did not know much about the other Native Americans before this project because it was not something that I studied recently.  Something I thought was interesting about doing this project was that the tribes all came from distinct areas in New York and mostly stayed in their own territories. I found the areas that the Native Americans more interesting as a college student because I am more aware of the different regions in New York State.  Another thing that I learned was that many of the famous people of the tribes had influence during the American Revolution.
             I thought this project became a little unorganized because many people forgot what tribe they were supposed to research. After we figured out who was researching which tribe, the groups worked out pretty well.  My group broke up the assignments for researching purposes. It helped us save time to find all of the information we needed. We also talked about different things we were finding as we researching. My group worked very well together during this project and we were able to complete the assignment very quickly and in an organized way.

                Although this assignment was developed for College students, it could be adapted for a fourth grade classroom. One thing that I would do differently is to have the students focus on less topics. The topics I would have the students focus on would be history, clothing, food and location. This would make it easier for the students to gather all of the information. I would have students hopefully in groups of four so that each student had a task to complete. Instead of making a PowerPoint, I would ask the students to fill out a web that they could bring back and show to their base groups. I think this activity would work very well with a fourth grade class and I would love to give it a try.  
As a teacher, after each student presents to their base group, one thing I would do is collect one of the graphs on each tribe and make copies for the whole class so they could have it to use a reference in the future. 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Group 4: Day 3 Our last day at BDMS


                Today was the last day for Group 4. For their cooperative lesson, the class was broken in three groups. Each group was given a secret message from one of the teachers. They had to work quietly so their mission was kept a secret from the other groups. I think this lesson was very well thought out by the teachers. The introduction was very good because it highlighted the main points of their other lessons. This was good because the students could pay attention for a short time. I also liked that the group made an acronym for the word TEAM to represent how to work like a team. I think this helped the students a lot. I also like that each group got a different mission because it made the presentations at the end more interesting. My only wish for this group would have to be to encourage the students to talk louder when presenting and let the students do more of the talking when presenting. Overall I think Group 4 did a great job. This is fieldwork experience was very good and I loved working with the second grade. It was great to see what each group’s approach to the lessons and their topics!