Brown University- Secondary Education Comment Form
Brown Summer High School
Student: Alla Chelukhova
Mentor: Jill Grey- Times Squared Academy
- Roles and Relationships: Alla had built wonderful relationships with not only the students but also with her co-teacher, Sylvia and her mentor. She has a wonderful way of engaging students into the content by having a phenomenal presence when she “tells a story” which is her manor of disseminating information. The students often respond well to her and Alla often talks one-on-one with students to understand them as a learner better. An example that is often seen in the classroom is while Alla circulates around the room; she will be seen discussing some of the students’ prior experiences to help them engage further with the content. This is a good way to establish her role as teacher/mentor to the students and not confuse herself as a “friend” to the students.
- Students as Learners: Alla in the later part of BSHS had begun to differentiate some of her instructions to different learners. She still needs some work on creating (labeling) authentic graphic organizers, handouts, etc that will help different styles of learners. Alla has however, recognized the need for working on this and has tried a few times to engage different learning styles by creating graphic organizers and by grouping students into working teams thoughtfully.
- Planning: Both Sylvia and Alla have done their planning together for a majority of BSHS. In the short amount of time at BSHS it is obvious the amount of growth that has occurred from the beginning to the end. Although there is still a good amount of growth that still needs to be made, they are certainly on their way. In the beginning the objectives were often vague and a bit unobtainable in the amount of time allotted. Now the lesson plans tend to be much more manageable and cognizant of time, although there could still be refinements. There is still work to be done with dialogue of the teacher in the lesson and “What students will be doing”. They both, however, are far from “beginning” on their lesson planning, as they have recognized faults in previous plans and modified those issues in later plans.
- Classroom Practice: Alla’s classroom practice has definitely grown over the summer. She uses her voice and presence well. Alla uses good cues and wait time to make sure that her objectives/directions are clear to the students before they begin an activity. When students challenge her, she will often respond to them with purpose for the class objective and try to sway them back on track. Alla still needs to work on her pacing and “tangents” while giving instructions or DTPs, but she has definitely shown progression in BSHS.
- Assessment: Sylvia and Alla used a variety of formal and informal assessments throughout BSHS. Some of the assessments leaned more towards the basic levels of DOK, but they progressed as Sylvia and Alla had higher expectations for the student’s display of information. By the end the students did a role play/debate about whose responsibility it is to protect the powerless from the powerful. The students did an excellent job during the debate. The foundation for the assessment had to be reviewed a few times during our debrief, but by the end Sylvia and Alla finally got a product that was good to disseminate to the students.
- Professional Knowledge and Growth: Both Alla and Sylvia are very reflective and really “take part” in the debrief. They also take the opportunity to put into action the points discussed in the debrief and in Methods into the classroom usually within the net class day). Both Alla and Sylvia have also researched resources outside of “school time” to bring new and innovative ideas to the classroom the next day.
In conclusion, it is my opinion that Alla is well prepared for and will do well during her student teaching. She is very thoughtful about herself as a teacher and the student’s knowledge/growth is always at the heart of her planning. Student teaching will be a wonderful process for her to continue her growth in eventually becoming a “master teacher”.