TS2, TS4 & TS7: Lesson Taught

I delivered the lesson to the year 4’s in the class, whilst the year 3’s worked on other maths with the class teacher. Right up until I had to deliver the lesson I hadn’t felt too nervous as I felt prepared and eager for this next step. I spent time before the lesson looking through the powerpoint presentation and familiarising myself with the slides and thinking about how the discussion would flow based on the slides and the time available, (TS4: Contribute to the design and provision of an engaging curriculum within the relevant subject area.) However immediately prior to starting my nerves kicked in. I reflected on past group teaching and decided to hold a board pen throughout the lesson as I previously found this stops me fidgeting.

Once I began the lesson, I felt much more relaxed and could focus on the children in the class and ensuring they were engaged in what I was teaching. I became immediately aware of who was on task and who had not yet zoned in. I reminded them that they needed to be quiet and listening but child A persisted with talking. I asked him to move to a different area on the carpet so that he and those around him would be less distracted. By doing this I was setting the standards of expected behaviour and showing I would act upon any unwanted behaviour, (TS7: maintain good relationships with pupils, exercise authority, and act decisively where necessary). Whilst Child A did move places, I asked him with an open question; “Can you move to the front please?” On reflection I know this should have been a direct instruction, as my open question invited a response and room to negotiate. Child A questioned my instruction and I had to repeat myself this time being very direct.

I was conscious of the time I had, as in previous teaching I had ran over or ran out of time to finish the lesson. I can see that in doing so it doesn’t allow full progression of the children’s knowledge or allow for an assessment of learning in the end plenary, so I needed to work on sticking to a more rigid timescale, whilst adapting throughout to meet the needs of the children.

During the lesson I assessed whether children were ready to move on to the next task by choosing them seemingly randomly, and asking them specific questions based at a level suited to the ability they had shown so far. I then skipped over some questions when they had explained their reasoning and understanding, to allow further questioning and discussion on other parts of the learning, (TS2: be aware of pupils capabilities and their prior knowledge, and plan teaching to build on these). Pace is clearly something that I need to focus on as I still found I had run out of time to complete all of the lesson that had been planned.

This experience has been hugely beneficial for my confidence in delivering to a much larger group of children. It has allowed me to put into practice the behaviour management and engagement strategies that I have been developing when teaching smaller groups.

Focused next steps to impact on your progress or the progress of the children in your care:

  • To avoid confusion and make myself clear, whilst saving time, I will continue to try using clear and direct instructions rather than asking open or closed questions with please at the end?
  • Keeping a close eye on the time throughout delivery is another key area that I will focus on due to this being something apparent in both this and previous teaching delivery.