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University of Puerto Rico at Humacao Luz A. Cruz Elementary School

TWS Leslie Ramos Claudio Practice Teaching- EDPE 4006

Cooperating Teacher: Mrs. Percychel Torres

Practice Supervisor: Prof. Anibal Mu単oz 2012-2013

English Department 0

Table of Contents I.

Contextual Factors ********************************************** 2


Learning Goals*************************************************6 Goal #1*******************************************************6 Goal #2*******************************************************7 Goal #3*******************************************************7


Assessment Plan************************************************9 First Learning Goal**********************************************10 Second Learning Goal********************************************10 Third Learning Goal*********************************************11


Design for Instruction********************************************12


Instructional Decision********************************************13 Activity #1*****************************************************13 Activity #2*****************************************************15


Analysis of students Learning**************************************18 Whole class****************************************************18 Subgroups*****************************************************20 Individual*****************************************************20


Reflection and Self Evaluation*************************************22



Contextual Factors

The Elementary School Luz A. Cruz de Santana at the Urbanization Villa Universitaria is found in Humacao. This school is placed in a small suburb community. This school holds up to 350 students each year. The population of this school is mostly people who do not live around the school area; but their parents do work around the area of Humacao, so they take their children to this school. Half of the students’ parents in this school have a least a high school diploma; the other half has a higher level of education; being MA the highest. This result is according to my group profile study. The school is in a safe place and there is a security guard that keeps strangers and parents away from going and staying inside school grounds. This school is a very organize school. It has a basic curriculum with subjects such as Math, Social Studies, Science Physical Education, English and Spanish. Other Extracurricular activities can be Art and Music. The administration is small and composed of the school Director Arleen Alicea Piñero, the administrative assistant Francisca Melendez, the social worker Debora Fontañes and the secretary Marisol Miranda. There are two janitors and a complete lunch room administration. There are twenty five teachers in this school including the resource teachers such as Special education, Physical education and English resource. There is a special education program which provides assistance in classroom and inside a contained room. The program offers speech and occupational therapy and gives the reasonable accommodations to special education students who need it.

Many students have health

problems, but their needs are met and the teachers are very aware of this matter. There are seven children from my classroom who attend therapy sessions during and out of school. The students that leave class and miss their material are quickly replaced by another students or the teacher 2

material; this is for matters of the testing and their benefit to not lose the skill for their grade level. There are classroom rules in Mrs. Torres class. She explained that since she knows the group, the students stapled the classroom rules in their notebook. We came up with new rules such as listening before speaking, following instructions before doing any work, always raise your hand to ask for permission or say something, and English language only, among other rules. After investigating what the students like, what are their weaknesses and strengths, I came up with many ideas to motivate the students. This is a very good thing because I have just started with a few exploring activities and they are turning the students around completely. I can also see that they are in a comfort zone and don’t want to do anything else but write from the board. I put myself to the challenge of wanting to awaken the interest of the students when coming to English class. I want them to view the class differently and enjoyable. I want them to get involve giving opinions; come up with new ideas; be creative and loud when it comes to talking about a specific subject of interest and writing about it; and I want them to take a stand because I know that they have potential. Some have such negative attitudes and I want to change those thoughts in a positive way. The classroom that I am assisting is a very wide room. It has a lot of space for activities. It has two doors and seven windows. The air conditioner of the classroom does not work for over five years now, but there are fans to cool off. The cooperating teacher has some technological devices like a small projector, a computer and a smart board; she let me use it when I present material in Prezi or Power Point. Also the class is nicely decorated with posters using English language themes. There are textbooks for 5th and 6th grade levels. The material is out-of-date, but with the new curriculum maps we can use a variety of selection and it does not have to be just the textbooks. The teacher goes over the greeting, date and attendance as usual. 3

There are a variety of leveled students; this means that they are all mixed in the class. I have advance students mixed with the intermediate and the lower level. This is a little challenging because I have notice that if I give a complex material the advanced students feel challenged but the lower level students feel lost and eventually get bored. Also, when I give easy material the lower level students get motivated but the advance students finish quickly and eventually also get bored. There are a variety of characteristics that I cannot leave out. I’ve seen that the students learn in different ways. For example, there is a student that has attitude problems; I thought that capturing the attention of this student was going to be hard, but I realized that in one of the assignments that I gave out to do, the student did the work; with attitude, but he did it. So I think that I can be able to meet the needs of every student, we just have to pay close attention to what they want and try to maintain their attention. When looking for instructional guidance I have realize the importance to look for material that is interesting, up-to-date, and understandable, to their skill level and related to what they are living. I have noticed that I can make more than just a lesson or just give the material and that’s it. I’ve incorporated a new learning style; I want the students to get more involved and be part of the learning process. I want to introduce them to technology and give them a chance to be a part of that. The majority of the students have a computer and internet access. This is a good thing because I can introduce the students to do research in a given assignment. In the sixth grade the students must have a structured way of writing. They need to be neat and learn the writing process. Brenda and I wanted to know how the students were in their writing. We saw that they needed a lot of help. So we decided to design an instruction of how to organize and begin writing a paragraph. We set up a step by step instruction on a power point presentation which has the structures of a paragraph; like topic sentence, body sentences and concluding sentence. We gave 4

it a child-like presentation, according to their age; they loved it! We realized that they need a lot of help constructing paragraphs. We decided that we are going to work with our journal entries every Friday and this way we can take the students out of their comfort zone and put them to think and write. An eye capturing material was way that we brought to the students a short story. We brought pictures related to the subject; this helped so much in checking comprehension. In this lesson we wanted the students to identify the adjectives and change them into new words using suffixes (-er, -est). But along with the short story we gave other information integrating science. We brought pictures of scorpions, crabs and spiders; the students were just amazed. We were happy because they were so eager to read and talk about the subject; this was a success. We already have a test coming up and we think that everyone is in the same line; we hope for the best on the first test. I have seen the parents’ involvement on their students’ academic achievements. According to my group profile 90% of the students’ parents assist parents/teacher meetings. This means that the majority of the parents are involved in their children’s learning. We have had personal meetings with parents and their concern are mostly about the test and whether their prepared or not. Two characteristics that I am going to be introducing for the new material to the students will be the writing process in an easy step by step process and they will be continuously writing on their journal. I also have in mind that by the end of the semester they write their own story and share it with another students or kid; for instance, this could be shared in a hospital.


II. Learning Goals The sixth grade class in the Elementary school Luz A. Cruz de Santana is in the unit of Exploring Narrative Text. This is going to have a time frame of 8 weeks. According to the curriculum maps, there are three goals established for the students conferring to their grade level and what is expected of them (skill; what they need to know). These learning goals are established according to the paragraph that the students did in class. Some demonstrated to have knowledge of how to construct a paragraph; but others did not even write one sentence. This directed me to make some decisions. I decided to do a power point presentation on how to organize and begin a paragraph with prompts. I also decided to do journal entries for ongoing assessment of paragraph writing. The student are anxious and exited at the same time because it is something new. I think this will be a great help for them in the long term. Goal #1 The students will be able to identify and organize events in narrative texts. To introduce what are narrative text the students will first read aloud or explore different sorts of text. This will be as a practice tool to be able to identify the elements of a story. Have them do story maps and also sequence of events. They will also know to identify the parts of speech (adjectives using character traits). Content standard and grade level expectation document: R.6.3- Distinguishes main character from the supporting characters, compares and contrast character traits, and describes the setting in fiction.


R.6.4- sorts and organizes relevant events, identifies cause and effect, makes predictions and inferences, and identifies the problem and solution in a narrative text and expository text. Goal #2 The students will be able to identify parts of speech (adjectives) and also construct new words using the suffixes (-er, -est). This can be used to compare character traits. Once the students find the description of each character then they will be introduced to the suffixes (-er, -est) to make up new words from the base word which are the adjectives from the stories. Content Standards and Grade level Expectations: R.6.2- Applies context clues, reference sources, and other vocabulary expansion strategies to assess word meaning; uses prefixes, suffixes, and root words to determine the meaning of unfamiliar and compound words. W.6.1- Examines spelling patterns and applies structural analysis to correctly spell words. Goal #3 The students will be able to construct their own narrative using their favorite genre. This will help the students start thinking of new ideas about a story they will construct. They will use adjectives and apply the suffix rule for (-er, -est) and use a variety of sentences types to do their own paragraph. Other than the writing done for assessment they will also have a journal entry which will help them develop and understand more the writing process. Content Standards and Grade Level Expectation: 7

W.6.3- Applies the parts of speech; identifies subjects and objects using prepositional phrases in sentences. W.6.4- Identifies elements in descriptive, narrative, and expository forms of writing; uses a variety of type sentences and basic organizational patterns to construct narrative, descriptive and expository paragraphs.


III. Assessment Plan Learning Goals


Pre-Test Goal #1 The students will be able to identify and organize events in narrative texts; Identify the parts of speech (adjectives) Formative Assessment


Pre-Test Goal #2 The students will be able to identify parts of speech (adjectives) and also construct new words using the Formative assessment suffixes (-er, -est).


Pre-Test Goal #3 The students will be able to construct their own narrative using their favorite genre. Formative Assessment


Format of Assessments


Story map: they will organized events of the story Venn Diagram: compare and contrast character traits

Provide more examples of short stories and go over the story elements and also identifies the adjectives from the story and also gives adjectives from comparing and contrasting character traits.

Real aloud; go over selections of short stories to seek story elements

Story: identify the story elements; make sentences using adjectives; write a 8 sentence paragraph using the adjectives. Check list: given the rules of suffixes (-er, -est) the students will apply them to a list of adjective base words.

Reinforce the part of speech along with the rules for the change of word using suffixes (-er, -est)

Quiz Short stories: to be read and analyzed to take out the adjectives and form new words using suffixes (-er, -est). Provide sentences with base word so the students can change it to a new word using Suffixes (-er, est) Drafting: they will construct paragraphs using the writing process

Exam: write a 10 sentence paragraph

The students will be reinforced by writing on their journals every Friday. They will keep track of all their mistakes and will recognize so they will not have to keep doing them.

Journal entries: write 5 to 10 sentence paragraph with provided theme.


The assessment plan clearly establishes what the students will be achieving and how they will be working on it. This is a truly ongoing process for which the teacher must be constantly monitoring each student. While going along with the unit it will provide if I must reteach or go on to the next lesson. First Learning goal I submitted the assessment of experimenting how the students were with constructing a paragraph. I decided to give a short story and identify the adjectives from the story to construct a new story using those same adjectives. When I got the papers back I’ve realize how far behind and the students lack of writing a well-structured paragraph. They are still in the first level of just writing sentences. This helped me visualize much better what to teach and how to teach it. I also saw that there were students who could not even start a sentence. During my formative assessments I decided I was going to do journal entries for the student. They will also get to do story maps so they can visualize better the story elements. I thought this will give them practice and also organization and structure to their writing. And will give the students who could not write a chance to view a little better how to begin a paragraph. Second Learning Goal The vocabulary I will be working with along the way when reading short stories will introduce the importance of having adjectives in a story. The students will study how to find them in a selection and will also mention what they modify. This way I will take out the adjectives and have them transform those base words into new words using the suffixes (-er, est). Then they will be tested on how well they know their adjectives and how to change them into new words. There will be a formal test on story elements, adjectives and suffixes (-er, -est). 10

According to how well the students turn out from the test we will reteach or we will continue with the unit. Or the formative assessment plans I am going to continue with the writing journal every Friday. I think that the writing journal will show me their progress in the long term. Third Learning Goal I have structured a step by step power point presentation on how to begin writing a paragraph. This is also going hand to hand with the writing journal. I will keep introducing short stories that will provide the students with new vocabulary words and other parts of speech. The students then will be tested again writing a paragraph. This will also help me see if I am teaching clear enough for own understanding. I will provide extra help to the students who are entitled to need help. I also will promote peer review with the students who are staying behind on the material or skill. Note: The following image is a sample of one of the post-test:


IV. Design for Instruction To design for instruction the students must show what they know about writing a paragraph. Note: students are supposed to write ten sentence paragraph for their grade level. According to the cooperative teacher each student must know already how to write a good ten sentence paragraph. Well I saw that the students are not prepared to do paragraphs. They are not good in organization or in structure. The students have some expectation according to their grade level. I will take the content standards R.6.2; W.6.1; W.6.3; W.6.4. These standards helped me establish my goals for the assessments of the students and monitors. I also decided that every Friday we are going to have journal entries. This is to keep track of their writing and to help them retain the skill of writing. Another activity is to introduce to the students silent reading. This activity will be held at the library. The students will find a variety of short stories to read and reflect upon the same. This will also be kept in their journal entries. Until today I have these activities in my mind to be able to observe students’ progress in writing. I will also introduce the writing process; but this is another unit. I will be presenting this material by Prezi, Power point presentations or by using the smart board provide in Mrs. Torres class. This is also a good way to integrate the core values of our department. I can do diverse activities according to what students like in their own way. I like to give them what they like such as sports, movies and more. I think this would be a great motivation for them. I also want them to be creative in their writing; this is why I will give them different things to choose upon. They will also learn to take a stand and give your opinion about some things that are relevant to them. I will see all this in their writing.


Part V. Instructional Decision Activities #1 In continuation of the instruction of writing an excellent paragraph I decided to do two important activities. After I started the first activity which was the journal entry I noticed that the students needed special help. I began by giving prompts without pictures and letting the students write; the prompts were displayed on a power point presentation. Figure Number #1 is a slide of a power point you will see how we had it displayed:

Figure #1 After this class I noticed that the students were not responding to just the prompts; they needed pictures to motivate them to write. I designed a power point with pictures and prompts all


together. Figure #2 and figure #3 is an example of one of the pictures that shows how they were displayed on the power point:

Figure #2

Figure #3 14

This power point worked out good, but there were students who still had trouble concentrating on the prompts. They would write the prompt but did not know what to write next; either their own idea or about the picture. This made me reflect on what was going on that I could not have them to write how I wanted. I wanted them to reflect on the picture and use the prompt as a guide to start writing a paragraph. One day while I was browsing through my movies, I found a movie I had made for children’s literature; and that’s when it strike me; I will do a movie with music and pictures so they can reflect on before writing using the prompts. So I designed a movie about a very interesting theme and I presented it to them. This turned out to be a success. Once the students saw the animated pictures with the music they wanted to watch it over and over again. After the movie the students had stimulated their imagination and came up with new ideas for what they wanted to write about. Activities #2 The second activity that was very important for writing an excellent paragraph was to teach them the writing process. I presented this theme a little different. I thought that it would be best if I had the students visually experience what is the writing process. The first class was the introduction of this theme. First I designed a model of the writing process with tracing paper so the students can have a model to guide them through when they are writing. Figure #4 and figure #5 show the pictures of the tracing paper used for the instruction:


Figure #4

Figure #5 The second day of class covering the writing process theme, I gave the students a blank paper simulating the model I had on the board. The students were to fill in the spaces provided with the information placed in the model of the writing process. This class was a very fun class; the students were very enthusiastic with the hands on activity. On the third day of class I provided an example of what the students were to do on their notebooks or a piece of paper when they were about to write. I simulated a huge piece of paper


using white tracing paper and I wrote the lines just like a regular piece of paper. Then I paste it on the board and with some markers I began to do the writing process with the students. I went step by step with the students and they all wrote on the giant paper. The hands on activity turned out to be a success. Figure #6 shows the example the students and I did together. The final product was written on their journals for example.

Figure #6


Part VI. Analysis of Students learning Whole class The analyzed data below indicates the students’ progress of the whole class according to the first learning goals presented. The first learning goal states that students will be able to identify and organize events in narrative texts. In this goal the students were to fill out a story map with the details of the story such as characters, setting, plot, problem and solution. This assessment was given in their first exam; after giving formative assessments on story elements. In one of the post-test the students were given a short story and were asked to identify the story elements. Table #1 displays the results of their performance in the test given. Table #1

First Exam Narrative Text

Whole class 22 students

Did not identify or identified 1 story elements given in the short story of the test.

Identified at least 2 to 3 story elements in the short story of the test.

Identified 4 to 5 story elements in the short story of the test.

2 students

7 students

13 students

This data tells me that almost have of the students need a little more assistance in how to identify the story elements in a text. The other half of the students succeeded in identifying the story elements. For the benefit of the half students that are a little wary on identifying story elements I have to reteach this skill and give it as a review in another way. I might consider collaborative peer work for their benefit.


The second learning goal was to identify the part of speech which is the adjectives. The students were to identify the adjectives using character traits from the story and random sentences with one or more adjectives. In the post-test I gave fifteen sentences that contained two or more adjectives. Table #2 displays the results of the whole class. Table #2

First Exam Parts of speech (Adjectives)

Did not identify or identified 1-4 adjectives in the test.

Identified 5-7 adjectives in the test.

Identified 8-10 adjectives in the test.

Whole class 22 students

2 students

4 students

16 students

This comes to show that the majority of the students were able to identify the adjectives in a sentence. The minority needs a little more improvement. This helps me understand that I must review with other text what adjectives are for the benefit of the students that could not identify the adjectives in a sentence. The third learning goal says that students will be able to construct their own narrative using their favorite genre. For this assessment I had the students write a paragraph on a separate sheet of paper. They were to write a story using adjectives or any other information they wanted to talk about. Table #3 below shows the results of the writing and states how many sentences were they able to produce.


Table #3

First paragraph Narrative Text

Did not write or wrote 1 -2 sentences.

Wrote 3-5 sentences.

Wrote 5 and more sentences.

Whole class 22 students

2 students

3 students

16 students

This chart shows that the majorities of the students understand or know how to construct a paragraph. This first paragraph was a diagnostic assignment to see how the students were doing about writing a paragraph. I notice that some were just listing sentences without linking them to form a structured paragraph. Others were on the right track. Subgroups The learning goal that is used to analyze the high and low-performers is the goal that states that students will be able to construct their own narrative using their favorite genre. In this assessment I considered the journals and the power point with the prompts. The class was divided into two uneven groups. The low-performing group was composed of 9 students. These students have difficulties in starting to write a paragraph. The need guidance and also continues assistance. Seven of these students are receiving special educational assistance. They are given their accommodations in the class. I also have them paired with other peers so they can serve as tutors to them. The higher-performing group is composed of 11 students. These students range in the average to the advance writing; according to their grade level. I pair these students with other students who are not able to produce a paragraph correctly. I have them usually working in


groups and this is one of the ways that I promoted leadership in the classroom. I turned out to be a great way to help each other. Individuals In this assessment I took the student that did the best on their journal. This student was able to produce 10 sentences; which is expected for a student in this grade level. On the other hand, there is one student who did not produce any other sentence but the prompts; and prompts were incomplete. The low-performing student is in the special education program. He needs assistance in class. I decided to have a tutor for him in my class so he won’t wait on me to do his work.


Part VII. Reflection and self-evaluation Being a teacher is about learning an also giving to others. I have learned that in order to teach effectively you should put yourself in the place as a student’s so you can know what the best way to learn something new is. My performance as a teacher has improved since I began. I never thought that I would have to continue with my studies. I’ve done research to give the correct information to my students. I have also looked for ways to introduce the material and motivate them to like what is given so they can understand it more. The learning goals have helped me realize how important it is for teachers to analyze their students learning progress. If I want everyone to learn I must adapt my teaching style to the students learning. This way Both the Teacher and the student will benefit. The most successful learning goal that I think the students did were the reflective journals and the writing process. I’ve seen the effort put in these assignments. You can see the difference in their writing if you compare what they wrote in the beginning and how they are writing now. This feels me with much joy because you can see the progress after time. I don’t think I have any least successful learning goals. I think that everything worked out just fine because if I notice that there was something not right in the process I’d find a way to fix it so I wouldn’t get the students confused. My professional development has shown positively for the past four months. I have noticed good and bad details that I may have to improve on. For example, maintain rules and be fair with everyone. I need to not feel any pitty for those students who are lazy and don’t want to do any work. They need to find a way also, like everyone else, to progress in the class. I have learn positive things during this practice teaching and one of the most important one is to not take all problems personally. Children can really ride you up the wall, but if you give them that negative attention they expect when they behave wrong, you will defiantly lose control of their behavior in class. I advise other 22

teachers to be constructive in discipline; learn that there are other ways to solve problems. This way they can model for every student who passes through their class and believe that something positive always will remain.



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