Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Class 12: 10/04/11-Peer Feedback on Lessons

For the first ten minutes of class Prudie, our UTeach master teacher, went over the logistics for the weekend field experience, and then we were split into groups. Each group had three teaching pairs, and each teaching pair had 15 minutes to present part of their lesson and seek advice from the other two pairs.

In my group, the first group was teaching a 10th grade geometry class a lesson about similarity and congruence using the side-angle-side and angle-angle-angle postulates.

For their warm-up, they plan on reviewing the distance formula, and classifications of triangles. Their driving question is, “How can you use mathematics to design a zip line at McKinney Falls”. The hypotenuse of the triangle would be the zip cable. On the first day of teaching they plan to introduce the question and have the students begin to design their zip line using what they know about triangles. At McKinney falls, they plan to show the students the location at which the park had decided to build the zip line. Students are to scale up their models, and determine if they fit the specified location. If they did not, they were to make adjustments to their calculations to make it work at this location. They would also use the GPS to take points and use that to help with their calculations. On the final class day, students will make any personalized changes to their design using the GPS coordinates, and create a model of final design with poster board, dowels and string to present to the class.

The second group is teaching a 9th grade biology class. Their objectives are ecology, food webs, and the effects of invasive species. Their challenge is to find a new organism to introduce into the ecosystem in hopes of helping it recover from the devastating drought. The first day they planned to review the concepts of trophic levels and food webs, and introduce the challenge to the students. Out at McKinney falls, the students would observe and take notes on the life they saw, and its relationship to other forms of life. The teaching group expressed concern about what to do at McKinney Falls and how to keep the students on track, and one person suggested they limit their students to the aquatic environment. On the last day, this group planned to have their students discuss the effects of the new species interacting with the preexisting species, and create a food web.

The third group was teaching a 6th grade math class about graphing, latitude and longitude, and the Cartesian coordinate system. The first day they planned to make the students experts at the GPS probes. Out at McKinney falls the students would participate in a treasure hunt and find “buried treasure” using layered transparencies making a map that they could then scale up to the park using GPS coordinates.

Each day in PBI a different student takes responsibility for blogging about what goes on in class. Today’s blog is brought to you by Anne.

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