Today’s practicum, in pictures:
(Students, in groups, examined quotes from important American revolutionary figures and paintings from the American Revolution. They had to match these images and quotes with descriptions that identified specifically what they were.)
Today’s takeaway: Sometimes what you plan is too much. My cooperating teacher had about 6 images and 10 quotes prepared for students to dissect. However, once we began the lesson, she realized that the number of quotes and images she wanted them to analyze was too large for the class period. She accordingly reduced the number of items she wanted students to look at and answer questions about. By doing this, she took some pressure off of the students who were worried about time, thus allowing for more thoughtful reflection on the primary texts at hand. Although her initial plan changed, I think it was better that she had more texts rather than having too few – it’s easier to take some away on the spot than it is to add more on the fly. This relates to the idea of being prepared for lessons in general – it is better to be more prepared rather than less. I think that with more experience, teachers can more accurately gauge the amount of information/materials they want to include in a lesson, but I myself find it difficult to determine how much – or how little – to include.