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Lesson

7th & 8th Grade Math – Graphs, Equations, & Tables

Clip 4/5: Post Lesson - Part 1

Overview

Disston and Ragent discuss their views of how the lesson went with a group of their colleagues who observed their teaching.

Teacher Commentary

JESSE RAGENT: We planned this lesson anticipating a range of student understandings and misunderstandings of this topic, and this was borne out in the classroom. But I am impressed with Jake's reaction to Dylan's erroneous reporting of the linear-quadratic graphs. I can see myself being flummoxed by starting the discussion with this "wrong" answer, but Jake says, "It was a beautiful way to start." He is breathing life into the maxim of errors being opportunities for growth and learning. A second interesting point is the use of a protocol as a tool that can make itself obsolete in well-functioning groups, but is nice to have as a reminder to bring semi-dysfunctional groups back on track.

Being forced to present my thoughts and reactions to the lesson to a group of peers just after the lesson is an extremely valuable exercise. It reinforces the value of personal reflection if I am to truly grow as a professional. Often at the end of the day I am too zonked to think back at all through what worked and what didn't. When I do catch my breath and reflect, it is often a cursory response like, "Well, the kids seemed pretty engaged here…and then their attention seemed to wander off there." But needing to communicate to others forces me to make my thinking more explicit and specific; it crystallizes my ideas in a much more productive way. Since this public forum is so rare the next best thing is to keep a professional reflective journal to enable me to learn from the day's lessons.