Be all that you can be. Find your future--as a teacher.

Musings of a second-year teacher.

Friday, November 03, 2006

First two lessons EVER!

Yesterday, I taught my two first lessons. Ever.
Due to the way the schedule is set up, I ended up teaching my lessons back to back. This was slightly nerve-racking, as I was afraid that if I bombed the first lesson, there would be no hope for the second lesson.

My first lesson was taught during the children's computer centers time. I had planned a webquest for my students and then a worksheet on Kidspiration if they finished the webquest in time. Since I'm in a first grade class and some of the students are still struggling with reading, I decided to create podcasts for the entire webpage. I had a little difficulty finding a way to create a podcast, so I ended up using Xanga to create and audio file and then copied the html into into my html on questgarden.

I wasn't sure what to expect with the first graders and a webquest. I started the lesson by having all the students sit on the floor and we reviewed what they remembered from their field trip to Jamestown (the webquest was on the Powhatan Indians) and then I used the smartboard to go over a few things relating to the webquest. I explained to students that they should push the triangle button to hear the words read to them. I tried to explain the concept of clicking on a link and then clicking the back button to return to the main page.

All in all, it wasn't a disaster. It was pretty chaotic, though. I know that many teachers are wary of using webquests with children this young. As far as the material goes, I don't think my students had a problem at all. They understood how to click to listen to the audio bits, but overall I think the students needed a little more exposure to webpages before doing an independent webquest. Many of the students didn't understand the concept of scrolling down each page to make sure they had read all the information. Many of them got confused once they clicked on a link and did not know where to go from there.

I think that they seemed to enjoy the idea (especially the fact that there were games at the end they could play once they finished!), but next time I'll ease into the webquest gradually. Probably if I had done a webquest on the smartboard first and then in another lesson done something small about navigating webpages and I modeled and then students tried the same thing, then my lesson would have worked better.


Blogger Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach said...

How Awesome. I am so proud of you! You are right on with your self-assessment. If it had been your students and your classroom you would have began the year with web-based learning and they would have been more comfortable with the technology! So your emphasis would have been more on content and less on the "how to" of the page.

You are right-- having it on the smart board and working together first would have been an excellent strategy. But to have taught your first lesson ever using technology and to walk away feeling good about it is incredible. I am so very proud of you.

5:26 AM  
Blogger Lani said...

Congratulations on teaching your very first lesson!!! I wish I had been there to enjoy it! Reading your post brought back such good memories of some pre service students I worked with some years ago.

I happen to think your using audio for the webquest is absolutely perfect and appropriate!

I'm sure your lesson was far from a disaster and now you've actually done it, you've already identified strategies for next time. (you have so many good strategies, I am so impressed!!!)

It's my sense that using the smart board to demonstrate was right on target. I'm wondering if you think you having students help you demonstrate that might might have provided some good practice for them? I see from another post that you were going to have them working in groups;did you you structure the groups with a certain intent? Do you think that made a difference?

You are going to be such a wonderful teacher!!!


6:06 PM  

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