Fourth observation – mentor post observation 25/03/2015

After the visit please attach your reflections on the comments made by the observer. Please consider the following:

·         How do you feel the session went?

·         What are your views about the strengths identified?

·         What are your thoughts about the development points?

·         What have you learned as a result of the observations?

·         How do you intend to change your approach in future lessons?

 

Reflective post observation write up, based upon Gibb’s reflective cycle (1988).

Description

The session was delivered to a high standard, with all learners present and responsive to the guidance and direction provided. The session as an assignment workshop provided an opportunity for learners to work independently. Within this session a seating plan was now in place, allowing for classroom management to be handled and controlled more effectively.

Feelings

During this session there was a feeling to show progression and development had been made. This was to show a sense of progression and development, as well as the requirement to prove to the observer’s true ability.

Following the observation there was a sense of pride and professional achievement as I had improved in grade criteria. Although not a grade one it has shown how I had developed through the use of the observation and critical reflective process.

Evaluation

Various assessment methods were used during the observation. They were used throughout the session as written by Gadsby (2012), to ensure learners were clear about what they were learning – and why. The target setting cards were used for learner differentiation by identifying that they all needed to work to their own pace and requirements (McCarthy, 2014). An additional review topic card was used as part of the session plenary. This forms part of the overall tracking and checking of learning. It does need to be allocated more time in future sessions to be more affective and to allow for stretching and challenging questions to be incorporated. Learners will benefit from this as identified by Tobin (1986) the time allocated to learning tasks is one of the most influential variables to impact learning. The concept was identified as a “good idea”.

Assessment methods need to be fit for purpose and used to allow for students to learn, which is the primary focus of anyone within education (Ronan, 2015). The use of too many can cause learners to be confused and disengaged with the session content.

The use of feedback to learners could have been improved to provide more structure and to be more constructive. Duffy (2013) identifies that through the use of constructive feedback learners are provided structured and measured information which can be used to motivate and inspire. This would also benefit learners by providing them with more relevant useful feedback to improve and develop. This could have been used more efficiently had lesson timings been used correctly and the amount of session content reduced.

Incorporated into the start of the session and discussed with learners – the objectives created the foundation for the learning to take place. The use of objectives within the session provides structure and information to guide learners. Dean (2012) notes that they are used to ensure learners journeys within the classroom are purposeful and set clear messages to learners of the focus and direction to be undertaken. The requirement to be SMART objectives allows for the tutor to envisage and assess learners through the session. This is used to track and observe progress made whilst checking understanding (Gough, 2009).

Pace is an aspect identified to be developed. The use of it within the observation slowed down the learning, causing learners to be distracted and bored. Rastegar, et al (Rastegar, et al., 2012) identifies this can lead to poor retention, demotivation and learners not developing and retaining the information required during the session. Within the session it is important to identify that as the tutor the pace and the tone of can be controlled to best affect. Kaufhold (2002) notes that this is an element which is a key tool that can be used to prevent learning losing interest.

The support provided to learners was of an excellent standard. This was through one to one feedback and dialogue with learners within the session. Independent learning was also supported with the use of the Blackboard online Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). With this Smith Harvey & Chickle-Wolfe (2007) writes that learners are provided strategies and methods of how to work independently. The use of such a teaching style provides learners with a sense of achievement and independence – which are key transferrable business skills (Watson, 2003). The embedding of such employability skills is important with the FE sector. Kelly & Melograno (2004) identifies these as the hidden curriculum which tutors deliver to embed values and skills to learners for employment and life.

Analysis

The overall influence upon this observation was planning. Through a lack planning for inclusivity and differentiation it impacted the foundations of the lesson and the tracking and assessing of the learners. This lesson plan layout was new and different to previous ones, which identified by (Engin & Priest, 2014) is not something which should be attempted in an observation.

The over use of the assessment methods was from the requirement to show and identify to the observers the wide range of skills and methods I had developed since the previous observation (Bracher, 2014).

Conclusion

The feedback and monitoring of progress so far has provided a progression with observation grading. This has shown an improvement from a grade three to grade two within this sessions.

The use of the observation process has provided critical analysis from which key teaching skills and abilities have been tailored and developed. For learners this has provided enhanced learning environments and structured formalised sessions – from which they can learn and develop more as an individual.

Action plan

Following this observation targets can be set to be implemented into future practice. The main focus will to improve the quality and planning process of lesson plans. This will be to embed differentiation and allowing planning of assessment methods used during the session. For the next observation the target will be to maintain the grade two obtained – to show consistency and build further towards a grade one.  These will be added into the ILP.

 

Please comment on the impact your teaching has had on your learners. You may refer to further activities planned for them, or how this session builds on previous teaching.

·         Learners have been conducted the unit for 6 previous weeks

·         Learners have become more capable within sessions. They have become trusting within sessions

·         This session builds further upon the role of an administrator and how the various types of information they will hold or potential deal with during work

·         The sessions are aimed at providing real life experiences and scenarios which are effective and useful

 

 

 

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