Category: Goal Setting

Captivate & Consolidate: Renewed Goals for 2019/20

As a learning support teacher, as well as, a language support teacher I am in a unique position as I serve students. I am able to really focus on their individual needs both academic and emotionally. I don’t have the added pressure of grading and developing curriculum to get them to particular benchmarks. Instead, I can focus on their particular learning needs as I help them achieve success in the classroom. Don’t get me wrong, I am fully aware of the learning goals that they are facing in their academic classes, however the approach I take to help them along the way can look a lot different. I feel very blessed to be able to serve students in this capacity.

In looking over my self-reflection at the start of the year, I notice that I am less confident in my ability to Captivate my students during our time together and Consolidate in order to ensure that their learning is impactful and meaningful. I recognize that these goals are similar to the ones that I made last year, as I feel that these remain areas that I can improve in.

Within the Captivate section I want to focus on the following:

  1. Make my lessons relevant to students’ lives and the world outside of school.
  2. Design lessons that are more interactive.
  3. Design lessons that pique my students’ curiosity and engage them actively in inquiry.

Within the Consolidate section these are the areas that I would like to focus on:

  1. Make explicit connections between lessons.
  2. Help students make connections within and across the curriculum.
  3. Refer to relevant current events or other meaningful applications of what my students are learning to facilitate transfer of knowledge and skills.

While providing a space where my students can achieve at a pace that is comfortable to them, I must still ensure that the support that I provide and the lessons that I deliver are lasting and impactful. I do not want to create a space that allows them to hide or back away from challenges, but instead give them the confidence to face those challenges. Both, Captivate and Consolidate are curricular goals and although I am not the academic teacher, I still should ensure that I am developing my students as learners so they are prepared for success in their classes.

I want to teach my students to be confident learners regardless of their individual learning needs. I desire to cultivate in them perseverance to keep trying and not to give up. By the time my students leave my support class, I want them to see themselves as effectual learners knowing that if they keep trying they will progress.

7 C’s and Goal Setting

After reviewing the 7 C’s and the reflection questions, I have determined that my goals for this school year will be to focus in the areas of Consolidate and Captivate. As a support teacher this can be tricky, as I support students within their classes. However, within my own pull-out classes I can see that improving these two areas would benefit my students and make this time with them more meaningful.

As I was looking through the reflection questions for Captivate, I found that there were some questions that I could not thoroughly respond to. I can see that I should develop lessons that more closely link to students’ lives outside of school. I think that this not only creates meaningful learning opportunities for students, but it also piques their interest in the lesson. Additionally, I find that I am not always consistent in my level of energy with my pull-out classes. This is important, as my level of energy affects my mannerisms throughout a lesson and I cannot captivate their attention if I am not consistent in this area.

With students that are in a pull-out class, they are often not too thrilled to be there. Furthermore, students that are struggling with grasping a concept will often try to avoid it. As a learning support teacher, it is vital that I find ways to inspire and captivate these students, whether I am in a push in or pull-out situation. I would like to challenge myself to find new ways to engage students and create interest in whatever lesson  is taking place.

“A Challenge to teachers: Don’t start on your curriculum until you are sure you know your kid’s strengths, issues, hopes and fears.”

– Ira Socol

Additionally, focusing on the area of Consolidating was of equal importance. My personal and professional passion lies in helping all students to find success in the classroom. I see this particular area as finding ways to support students as they find connections within the lesson and to their prior knowledge and learning. As a support teacher, I am in the unique position to have many one on one interactions with students throughout their learning. I truly enjoy this aspect of teaching and I want to become even better at creating ways to support them at a greater level to now only understand the information being presented but to make the lesson more personal and valuable for them.

” The essence of our work is taking vast swaths of information and helping our students make sense of it.”

– Jennifer Gonzalez @cultofpedagogy

I look forward to developing in these areas throughout this school year. My goal is to find strategies and approaches throughout to better captivate my students and to create meaningful connections between content and the student’s own prior experiences and understanding. It seems that these two areas can easily go hand in hand and as one developes the other will natural progress as well. Recently, I have really pondered the idea that we are no longer the deliverers of information. As teachers, we no longer have the market on new information. Students have access to any and all information that they need. My role as an educator is to help students to synthesize and make sense of this information. Not only that, but to create opportunities for students to draw on their own knowledge and understanding of the world to make the skills that we are teaching them meaningful. Ideally, I would acknowledge my students’ individual passions and interests and draw on these as we introduce new skills.

© 2020 Destyni Rivera

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