Think reflectively about the micro-teaching activity that you and your partner created and presented in class. Then, write a blog (250-300 words approx.) that responds to the following three key questions: why you found this activity interesting and strong for your class, what you would have done differently due to differentiating instruction reasons, and how you would have incorporated more culture into it.

 

In order to earn full credit for this blog, you must also leave at least two comments (50-100 words each) on your peers’ posts. Please take the time to read what they wrote – you’ll find that you often have similar reactions to the teaching experience, and can help one another a great deal through this first semester!

 

Deadlines:

For personal blog: Tuesday, April 30, 2019, 11:59 p.m.

For two comments: Thursday, May 2, 2019, 11:59 p.m.

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Our reading lesson was presented effectively, it consisted of vocabulary and a small reading about family using the possessive form in Spanish. In the activity, we created examples on how to appropriately use the verb as well as a lot of examples and pictures. We tried creating as many images to the practice in efforts to make it easier for students to assimilate members of the family with pictures.  For the production, we created examples on how we wanted the students to comply with the activity for them to work in pairs and ask each other questions about their family.  One of the things that requires change in our presentation and would have done differently is the focus primarily on reading, it was mentioned that we had two lessons vocabulary and reading.  According to Lee and Van Patten (2003), instructional materials for reading in a second language were once tied to the grammatical structures and vocabulary being taught.  It was assumed that learners could not understand a language they had not been taught.  The findings however, shows that you should not conclude that language plays no role in second language reading comprehension. Therefore, we should have eliminated vocabulary and grammar in our lesson and instead done it in a way in which a pre reading, while reading and post reading was presented.  Since our reading was about Una familia ecuatoriana, the way we would include more culture into our lesson would be showing where Ecuador is located and give a small overview of the country for example, weather, people, and important places.    (262)

Hello Maria:

Your lesson contained essential concepts for us. However, the sequencing of activities was not very clear. For example, in some instances of the lesson, we were viewing chunks of reading comprehension. Mainly, your focus should be reading. You should formulate activities around the reading. Which aligns with the discussion presented by Lee and Van Patten (2003), regarding reading comprehension. According to the authors, it is essential to present activities that provide familiar situations for students, as this will facilitate reading comprehension.       (83 words)

References:

Lee, J. F., & VanPatten, B. (2003). Making communicative language teaching happen. Boston: McGraw-Hill

The third micro-teaching activity my group has presented was focused in the teaching of possessive adjectives in Spanish. To make the activity relative to the previous knowledge of the students, we decided to incorporate pictures in order for them to connect better with the lesson.  We tried to use visual materials in order to facilitate learner comprehension (Lee & Vanpatten, 2003). We also chose some activities to engage the students in the lesson by giving them different task about reading such as “Una familia ecuatoriana” and “La familia de mi amiga Ana.” I found this activity interesting because it was a simple lesson in which students would have to recognize the possessive adjectives. It also was strong because my partners and I decided that our activity needed to be meaningful and authentic for the students. So, we gave the students the opportunity to interact and to be engage with each other by making small groups. Working with others gives the students the opportunity to interact with a variety of peers and learn from one another. It also encourages cooperation which would help students get along in class  (Lee & Vanpatten, 2003).

Something I would have done differently, as it was mentioned in class, is to focus more on the structure of a reading activity in which the three phases of reading (pre-reading, while reading, and post-reading) were implemented.  These three phases are important because second language learners need help bringing their knowledge to bear on the process of comprehension. (Lee & Vanpatten, 2003, p. 228). Due to differentiating instruction I would like to provide extra time explaining the topic in order to help students achieve their highest potential. Every student is unique and have specific learning needs and style.

To incorporate more culture in this activity, I would have incorporated my own family’s picture in order to help the students understand better the topic. By bringing real life objects (realia) into the classroom, the students are more aware of the material that they are learning (Lee & Vanpatten, 2003).  (335 words)



References

Lee, J. F., & VanPatten, B. (2003). Making communicative language teaching happen. (2nd ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill.



Hello Selena, 

I really enjoyed your presentation especially considering the fact that you included lots of visuals. This is an example of binding as emphasized by Lee and VanPatten (2003) that "visuals such as pictures and drawings 'anchor' the input... making the idea and references to it more concrete." But, I do agree with the feedback that in the future it would be better to include a pre-reading, while reading, and after reading since this was a lesson directed towards reading comprehension. 

Our third micro-teaching activity allowed my partner and me, to gain more exposure to a different aspect of designing a lesson. Our focus aimed to cover the listening comprehension of our students. As a result, we formulated an activity that focused on the topic of food. One of the strong points of the lesson was the selection of the topic. However, our sequencing of activities did not cover the listening comprehension completely.
For instance, our sequence of activities was aimed towards two different lessons. For example, during our teaching slice, we focused on presenting vocabulary and grammar as opposed to listening comprehension. Also, our selection for the listening activity was not meaningful; it was too traditional and full of incomplete input. Lastly, the video contained alcoholic beverages, which can create conflicts.
For the future, I would develop 4 activities around a listening medium. For instance, I would develop a pre-listening activity. Usually, the pre-listening will consist of a visual to prepare the students for the central concept of the lesson. Afterwards, I will present the recording along with an activity. Subsequently, I will present another activity to follow-up with the previous one. Lastly, I will present them with an activity that encourages the students to produce a summary or a list. Mostly, the sequencing of the activities, came as a result, of the discussion presented by Lee and Van Patten (2003), regarding listening comprehension. According to the authors, classrooms should provide the students with the opportunity to expand their listening skills. (pp. 203).
Lastly, for the culture portion of the lesson, I feel that we could have exploited the topic of food to include more Spanish culture through it, which aligns with the discussion presented by Lee and Van Patten (2003), regarding culture. The authors concluded that activities should serve as a bridge to explore new culture and its social norms.

References:
Lee, J. F., & VanPatten, B. (2003). Making communicative language teaching happen. Boston: McGraw-Hill

Hello Dennis:

The micro-teaching activity you and your partner presented was very effective and helpful to students, the activities were interesting as well as engaging. I would have to agree with you with the part of the video which was a little confusing and hard to understand.  Maybe a different video would have been a better option for students where, we as educators are not faced with promoting drinking in our classrooms.  Videos can be a useful learning tool in the classroom and they are considered effective when it is short and concise.  

Hi Dennis I agree with you and Maria on the video part being sort of confusing. For these type of situation like it was mentioned in the classroom, we should do our research regarding videos and textbooks which was our case about our presentation. Overall, I believe the lesson was very colorful and meaningful to the students. 

Our micro-teaching activity presented in class with my partners, focused on reading comprehension. We prepared our lesson based on the family theme and we included the possessive forms. First, we presented a dialogue where students listened and they answered questions based on the dialogue about family. After that, we showed them the possessive form with many visuals and examples in order to help them make better connections with the lesson. Additionally, this helped as a review for the activities that they were going to complete later in class. For this reason, at the beginning of our practice part we included a table with both the plural and the singular form of the possessives. However, our lesson did not go as planned, we did not follow the structure for teaching reading comprehension. As it was mentioned in class, we had two incomplete lessons, because we attempt to teach both grammar and reading at the same time, our main focus should have been only reading. According to researchers, shows that second language readers learn new words from reading them in context and also they gain a greater knowledge of grammatical form reading in context (Lee and VanPatten, 2003). We should have considered the different phases presented on a reading activity which help students comprehend the written language. As it is presented, the structure that one needs to follow while teaching reading, consists of three phases: preparation (pre-reading), guided interaction (during reading), and assimilation (post-reading) (Lee and VanPatten, 2003). At the beginning of our lesson, we should have incorporate a video, so students will identify and discuss the topic. For the culture part, since we were presenting an Ecuadorian family, we should have add more information about Ecuador and its traditions. On the other hand, we promoted the cooperative learning in our classroom by giving them the opportunity to interact with their classmates in the activities, helping each other for better understanding. 

References: 
Lee, J. F., & VanPatten, B. (2003). Making communicative language teaching happen. Boston: McGraw-Hill

Hello Karolina,

The lesson presentation that you and your classmates did was interesting, colorful and dynamic. I love all the slides that you and your classmates created because you use a great topic combined with good practices exercises and excellent vocabulary. The content of the lesson was clear and easy for student's comprehension. However, I think the production part was not according to the reading comprehension and was more about writing than reading. (words 71)

Hi Karolina, 

I really enjoyed the lesson you and your classmates presented. However, the presentation could be taken as overwhelming to the students. Like we have read in our readings, we must adjust to the needs of our students and make them as simple as possible in order for them to understand the target language. I liked that you and your group created a two way lesson because there were a lot of useful information. I recommend that it will be much better and easier for students to understand the lesson that you all were trying to teach if you and your partners separated them in to two lesson instead of one. For the future in a reading comprehension, your lesson should include sort of a paragraph for the students to read and answer question according to their reading comprehension in the target language. Overall, I really enjoyed your presentation. (178)

The topic of our lesson was speaking Spanish. In our lesson we focused more on greetings and pronunciation. I found our activities interesting and strong for our class because we provided multiple opportunities for students to practice the usage of greetings as well as compared difficult letters such as “ll” and “ñ” to English letters (“ll”=y) or words (“ñ”=onion) so that students can not only remember but have the confidence of knowing that they can do it because it’s something they use every day. Some things I would have changed are provide a more customized activity to our class instead of base the activities off of Spain. A common error that is done in many classrooms that not only confuses students learning Spanish for the first time but also those who have spoken Spanish or heard it throughout their life. Instead of showing images or conversations more targeted to Spain I could have incorporated more of Latin America and emphasized Latin American and Caribbean Spanish speaking countries on the map. On way I would have incorporated more culture into this lesson is not only changing the map’s emphasis but also by pointing out very simple differences in greetings throughout the Spanish language. Of course in keeping it basic I will remind students that in language there are many words for greetings but we will focus on the most popular as well as ask students if there are any they may know or want to share to ass to the list. (252)

Hello Melinda:
Your teaching slice presented key concept for us. However, the sequencing of your activities was not clear at times. In other words, they were complex at some points. Additionally, some of the material contained too much translation to English. Which goes against the concepts presented by Lee and Van Patten (2003), regarding communicative teaching. Lastly, the lexical variation presented on the greetings and formalities sheet was too overwhelming; it contained an opaque list of terms.
Nonetheless, your lesson presented relevant concepts that are essential for real-life interaction.

(87 words)

References:

Lee, J. F., & VanPatten, B. (2003). Making communicative language teaching happen. Boston: McGraw-Hill

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