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7th Grade Math - Area and Perimeter

Clip 1/11: Planning


Here fellow colleague Patty Ferrant and I (Antoinette Villarin) share our lesson with our math coach Suzanne McSpadden. Our discussions include the objectives, process, and reasoning for how we approached area and perimeter.

We discuss why we chose the lesson, how we designed it, and what big ideas would be addressed in the lesson. We then share the design of our lesson, which Suzanne parallels to a MARS task. Our lesson includes entry-level discussions with the class about area and perimeter, a main activity addressing the core mathematics behind these concepts, and a ramp-up challenge for students who were ready to move on. In this discussion, Patty and I want to emphasize our goals of justification, discourse, and making connections between the procedural skill and the big ideas.

Teacher Commentary

I learned early in my teaching career that post-reflection is an important part of the process. It wasn't until much later that I realized that pre-reflection is just as important. This includes having a learning goal for the lesson and envisioning what the lesson might look like before jumping in the classroom. From this footage of our pre-lesson conversation, I am reminded of the value of internalizing a lesson before teaching it. Sharing it with others definitely helps with this process.

I remember in this first video, the three of us discussing what we were planning to do in the lesson. Patty and I were sharing with Suzanne our objective and how we were hoping to begin. Here, sharing the lesson with others and articulating our ideas helped us envision what it would look like. Through articulation and the collaboration that came with this process, we prepared ourselves pretty much for teaching it. We were able to run through what was going to happen, and justify each step with an objective. In turn, the lesson became meaningful for everyone involved. Both teachers and observers could see that planning a lesson was a process where reflection at the beginning was just as important as reflection at the end.