SUNY CORTLAND MOTOR DEVELOPMENT LAB
PED 201 – Professor Yang
Reflection: Lab Six
Name: Stephanie Paulsen Date: 12/7/2011
A. To reflect on your experiences working with the St. Mary’s students.
B. To gain knowledge and insight as to your individual “teaching style” through play and participation.
Answer the following questions to the best of your ability.
TASK A/B: Reflection on experiences working with St. Mary’s students.
1. Based upon observations and interactions with the St. Mary’s students, describe what you have learned about young children? Provide examples of activities you felt were appropriate. Why? Were there activities that were not appropriate? Why?
Working with the students of St. Mary’s Elementary has taught me a lot about young children and how they learn and interact. The experience I have had has taught me a lot about what activities are good with certain age groups and also how to teach certain skills to young children. I’ve learned that most young children have short attention spans and that if you are going to start an activity, get right to it. One key thing I learned is to keep the directions and rules short and right to the point to lessen the chance of confusion. Appropriate activities were dependent on the age group and each week I tried my hardest to develop games that were age appropriate for my students. However, there were groups that developed certain activities that were not appropriate for the students during some of our labs. There were multiple things that made them inappropriate but there was one main reason for most, the task was too hard for the students. One way to solve this problem is to make sure you know the age and skill level of the student prior to planning the activities.
2. Based upon your interactions with St. Mary’s PRE K program, describe your experience. How was this different from working with the older age students? Did you enjoy working with younger age children? Why or Why not?
Based on my interactions with the St. Mary’s Pre-K program I’m happy to say my experience was great! I really enjoyed working with the Pre-K group because they are so excited about everything and really interested in new activities. One important experience that I remember from lab was when I read a book to the Pre-K group. It was a Dr. Seuss book that the children loved. I kept them engaged by asking them questions as well as letting them read along with me. The finale was at the end when the book went through the ABC’s. I had the entire group including my fellow group member say aloud the ABC’s with me. Seeing the children smiling and so excited to say the ABC’s was just great! Overall, I really enjoyed working with the younger children. It was different working with the older children rather than the younger children because the older children get bored easily if the activity is not interesting to them.
3. During your field experience, each of you worked with children in the cafeteria setting. Describe the fine motor activities you observed. Do you feel that working on fine motor activities is something we should work on in Physical Education.
While working with the children in the cafeteria I observed several different fine motor activities. Playing with things such as Lego's and marbles as well as playing games like chess and mancala build fine motor skills. These activities work on fine motor skills as well as bring children together to work on social skills. I think it is especially important to work on fine motor skills in general as well as in Physical Education because fine motor skills are the base of all other skills. A child with high, sufficient fine motor skills will most likely be successful in other skills. Developing fine motor skills as a young child will help them grow to develop mature motor skills. As a physical educator I know the importance of having fine motor skills so one is capable of becoming a sufficient mover, that is why I feel that working on fine motor skills should be activities that are incorporated into the physical education curriculum.
4. Reflecting on your growth as a future teacher, what have you learned from this experience that has given you insight as to your individual “teaching style”. Has your teaching style emerged based upon your experience and interaction at St. Mary’s. If yes, in what way. If not, how else might this occur?
This experience of working with the children of St. Mary’s Elementary has allowed me to grow as a future teacher as well as taught me about my individual ‘teaching style’. My style of teaching has always been a direct approach with demonstrations and models. I feel like this style of teaching can be successful in teaching students that have any learning style. By providing a direct approach with demonstrations and models I feel like all students can clearly know their roles and tasks, which is the most important thing in a teaching setting. I feel like my teaching style emerged and developed in a positive way due to working with the St. Mary’s children. I say this because I have learned new, sufficient ways to be more direct with instructing young children. This makes it possible to keep the children’s attention, have them know their task, and most importantly the students know their role in the activity.