I hope you had a great weekend! I am back at it again with the A to Z Blogging Challenge!! Today is brought to you by the letter O!
My “O” stands for Teacher “Observation” & “Ounce” of Preparation
I know. I know.
If you are not a teacher, a teacher observation is when your principal or vice principal or some other “Power that IS” observes you while you teach, and evaluates your performance by usually using a set of standards.
“What is the big deal with that?” You ask. “Everyone in just about every job has evaluations of some sort.”
Well, a teaching observation is different because you are dealing with children and you KNOW how dependable they are— NOT! I don’t mean to bash kiddos. They are not dependable by nature. I don’t expect kids to be fully dependable yet.
My point is teacher observations can be affected by the behavior and engagement of your students. Unlike a usual job evaluation where (unless you are working on a group project) your boss’ evaluation would not be influenced by an outside source.
So What do you do to have an AMAZING observation and look like a teaching superstar to your administration?????
Yes, of course you practice! Everyday you teach and hone your skills to become a better teacher, but this kind of practice deals with VERY specific preparation & practicing very specific behaviors with your group of students.
Have you ever heard the old saying, “An ounce of Preparation is better than a pound of Cure?”
Well, today I am going to explain…..
How to Prepare your “Ounce” for your Next Teacher Observation!!
I. If possible, pick your most mature best behaved class for your observation. Sometimes your principal will give you a time and you have no choice, but if you do, there is NOTHING wrong with picking a class that is well behaved!!!
II. Practice, Practice, Practice!
Go over your lesson. Time it out. Make SURE you have enough material to keep your students busy during the whole observation– NO student free time– it is the kiss of Death in teacher observations!
You should ALSO practice with YOUR STUDENTS.
Honestly, I go over the entire lesson with my students one or two days before the observation. I tell them the principal is coming in to watch me teach and them learn. We want to show him (or her) what we are learning and how much we have mastered so far in the school year.
When I first started teaching, we would practice the lesson right down to who would answer which questions!?!?! (I was PREPARED!)
I don’t practice to that extent with my students now, but it becomes a bonding experience with your kids if you have the correct attitude and make it fun.
The students feel prepared and ready to participate during the lesson observation rather than shying away from asking questions because they are afraid to be wrong with a stranger in the room.
III. BRIBERY IS GOOD!
Every teacher bribes their students at one time or another at some point in their career, and a lot of teachers believe in bribery. If they say they haven’t or they don’t— their britches are ablaze!! Trust me! 😉
I do think that it is necessary with some students to reach certain goals, but I try not to use it on a regular basis.
Rather than calling it a “Bribe” to have your students behave, call it a “Reward” for their participation and mastery of the lesson. My students would show off for donuts and chocolate milk!!
When someone important comes to visit, you make sure your house and children are clean, so why not do the same thing when your principal comes to visit your “Home Away from Home??”
There ARE some observations that are not scheduled and the administration just “pops” in. Obviously, you cannot practice and prepare for those so why not make the most of the ones you can?????
Do you have an amazing strategy to help you deal with observations and/or evaluations?? I would LOVE to hear it!!! If you are not a teacher but have suggestions for any employment evaluation I would love to hear those too!!
Please share in the comments!
Hope you have a great Monday and remember, Always Pay Attention!!