Creating an Effective Learning Environment

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  • Lesson Identification and TEKS Addressed

    Cluster : Education and Training

    Course : Practicum in Education and Training

  • TEKS Student Expectations

    • (5) The student creates and maintains an effective learning environment. The student is expected to:
      • (A) create and maintain safe and effective learning environment
      • (B) integrate teacher or trainer characteristics that promote an effective learning environment
      • (C) apply classroom management techniques that promote an effective learning environment
      • (D) demonstrate specific conflict management and mediation techniques supportive of an effective learning environment
  • Basic Direct Teach Lesson

    Instructional Objectives

    Students will:

    • Discuss guidelines and plans for maintaining a safe and effective learning environment for students
    • Apply classroom management techniques to classroom scenarios that maintain safe and effective learning environments for students
    • Identify the steps in constructive conflict resolution and describe the goals of mediation
    • Identify characteristics in teachers that promote an effective learning environment
  • Rationale

    Script:

    Students want to feel safe and secure in the classroom and it is one responsibility of the teacher to ensure this essential student need is being met. In this lesson you will learn to create and maintain an effective learning environment while practicing conflict management and mediation techniques.

  • Duration of Lesson

    Five 45 minute lessons

  • Word Wall

    Classroom Management: The steps teachers take to optimize learning by shaping their classroom environment, engaging students in learning, and minimizing inappropriate behavior.

    Classroom Procedures: Specific guidelines that translate the class rules into concrete actions expected of

    Classroom Guidelines: The guidelines for students behavior specific to a class or teacher

    Mediation: The process of bringing about agreement or reconciliation between opponents in a dispute

    Mediator: A neutral person who oversees conflict resolution in order to help others reach a peaceful settlement

    Peer Mediation: Facilitated deliberation that helps students in conflict resolve their disputes and create their own solutions, using shared problem-solving within a school setting

  • Materials/Specialized Equipment Needed

    Equipment:

    • computer with projector for multimedia presentation
    • presenter/remote
    • computer lab with Internet access

    Materials:

    • legal paper
    • markers

    • copies of handouts ( see All Lesson Attachments tab)
  • Anticipatory Set

    Prior to the lesson: Gather legal size paper and markers for all students.

    Before class begins: Arrange desks into groups and place one legal size paper with several markers in each group.

    __

    As class begins, tell students to draw a person (stick figures are okay). Inform students they will be creating a poster that reflects an effective teacher. Tell students to write or draw pictures around the teacher that exhibit the skills of an effective teacher. For example, where the teacher’s hands are, students should write or draw pictures of what an effective teacher does with her hands. For her mouth, the students should write or draw pictures of what an effective teacher says. Ask students to share their posters with the class.

  • Direct Instruction with Special Education Modifications/Accommodations

    Introduce lesson objective, terms, and definitions.

    Distribute the handout, KWHL Chart – Creating an Effective Learning Environment (see All Lesson Attachments tab). Students will fill out the first three columns of the chart. Ask students to write down what they already know about classroom management, what the want to know about classroom management and how they can find more information about classroom management. The last column will be completed during lesson closure.

    Introduce PowerPoint™ Creating an Effective Learning Environment (see All Lesson Attachments tab). Students will be expected to take notes while viewing the slide presentation.

    Individual Education Plan (IEP) for all special education students must be followed. Examples of accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

    • check for understanding
    • providing assistance with note-taking
    • providing extra time for oral response
    • frequent feedback

  • Guided Practice with Special Education Modifications/Accommodations

    Distribute the handout, Verbal and Nonverbal Communication (see All Lesson Attachments tab). Students will complete the chart based upon how teachers can effectively communicate with students both verbally and non-verbally. Share and discuss.

    Distribute handout, T-Chart Pros and Cons of Peer Mediation (see All Lesson Attachments tab). Students will write down the pros and cons of peer mediation. Share and discuss.

    Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for all special education students must be followed. Examples of accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

    • check for understanding
    • providing extra time for oral response
    • frequent feedback
    • providing peer tutoring
    • reducing length of assignment

  • Independent Practice/Laboratory Experience with Special Education Modifications/Accommodations

    Distribute handout, Classroom Management Scenarios (see All Lesson Attachments tab). Inform students they will respond to a series of classroom management scenarios. First, the class will complete an example out loud together. Students will work on the assignment independently completing the task.

    Review assignment rubric so that students are aware of assessment procedures.

    Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for all special education students must be followed. Examples of accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

    • check for understanding
    • providing extra time for oral response
    • frequent feedback
    • providing peer tutoring
    • reducing length of assignment
    • assisting student in gathering information
    • providing praise and encouragement

  • Lesson Closure

    Review lesson objectives, terms, and definitions.

    Complete graphic organizer, KWHL Chart – Creating the Learning Environment (see All Lesson Attachments tab) to analyze what they have learned about classroom management.

  • Summative/End of Lesson Assessment with Special Education Modifications/Accommodations

    Student presentations will be assessed with appropriate rubric provided during Independent Practice.

    Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for all special education students must be followed. Examples of accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

    • grading according to work done
    • providing praise and encouragement

  • References/Resources

    Textbooks

    • Cooper, J.M, Ryan, K. (2000). Those Who Can, Teach Ninth Edition. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin Company.
    • Henke-Konopasek, N. (2010). Student Workbook Teaching. Tinley Park, IL: Goodheart-Willcox Company.
    • Kato, S.L. (2010). Teaching. Tinley Park, IL: Goodheart-Willcox Company.
    • Wong, H., Wong, R. (1998). The First Days Of School. Mountainview, CA: Harry K. Wong Publications, Inc.

    Websites

    • Peer Mediators
      This site offers free peer mediation training and online curriculum to school districts.
      http://www.peermediators.org
    • Peer Mediation – Study Guides and Strategies
      This website contains information and strategies to implement peer mediation in the classroom.
      http://www.studygs.net/peermed.htm
  • Additional Required Components

    English Language Proficiency Standards (ELPS) Strategies

  • College and Career Readiness Connection

    AchieveTexas Career Cluster Crosswalks

    The Career Cluster Crosswalks housed on the AchieveTexas website http://www.achievetexas.org/index.html provide Texas teachers with a direct connection between their CTE course TEKS and the College and Career Readiness Standards (CCRS). Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies and Cross-Disciplinary integration are the focus of the CCRS. These college and career readiness standards are essential in the planning and delivery of CTE lessons. The extent to which the integration occurs is determined by the methods and strategies utilized by each teacher.

    Career Cluster Crosswalks for Education and Training, Hospitality and Tourism and Human Services Career Clusters can be found at:
    http://www.achievetexas.org/Career%20Cluster%20Crosswalks.htm

  • Recommended Strategies

    Reading Strategies

    Promote the use of the pre-reading strategy prediction.

  • Quotes

    The task of the modern educator is not to cut down jungles, but to irrigate deserts.
    -C.S. Lewis

    A teacher is one who makes himself progressively unnecessary.
    -Thomas Carruthers

    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards.
    - Vernon Law

  • Multimedia/Visual Strategies

    PowerPoint™:

    • Creating an Effective Learning Environment
    • Presentation Notes: Creating an Effective Learning Environment

    Technology:

    Option: Locate a copy of the video below and show select video clips.

    • Beyond the Blackboard
      This movie is 96 minutes long, and is a great example of classroom management and building relationships with the students in the classroom. The movie also deals with homelessness and literacy problems. It is a great example of a teacher connecting with her students.

    Files for downloading:

  • Graphic Organizers/Handout

    Graphic Organizers:

    • KWHL Chart – Creating the Learning Environment
    • T-Chart

    Handouts:

    • Classroom Management Scenarios
    • Constructive Conflict Resolution
    • Constructive Conflict Resolution Key
    • Verbal and Nonverbal Communication
    • Verbal and Nonverbal Communication Key

    Files for downloading:

  • Writing Strategies

    Journal Entries:

    • What characteristics does it take to make an effective teacher?
    • How can teachers create a safe environment for students to learn in?
    • How can teachers utilize classroom management strategies to foster a positive student learning environment?
    • How can teachers resolve conflict within the classroom?

    Writing Strategies:

    • RAFT Writing Strategy
      • Role: Student
      • Audience: Future teachers
      • Format: Informative
      • Topic: How to create a positive and safe learning environment that fosters student learning
  • Communication 90 Second Speech Topics

    • How can conflict management and mediation techniques support an effective learning environment for students?
    • Describe strategies teachers can utilize to create a safe learning environment for students.
  • Other Essential Lesson Components

    Enrichment activity

    Write an article for a parent newsletter about an event in your school. This can be an interesting class or school activity, volunteer opportunity, or other topic that would be of interest. When developing your article, keep parents’ needs and interests in mind. Communicate the information clearly and concisely. Proof read your work carefully. Make sure that the tone is positive, enthusiastic, and constructive.

  • Family/Community Connection

    Have students participate in a contest in honor of Teacher Appreciation Week. Students will choose a teacher who has had the most influence on their life and write an article about the teacher. Have the students explain why the teacher deserves the nomination for “Teacher of the Year” by describing how he or she is an inspiration to students. Have the students describe this teacher’s methods and strategies for engaging students. Students could ask community members to donate items such as a gift certificate for dinner or a movie as a gift for receiving the “Teacher of the Year” award.

  • CTSO connection

    Family, Career, Community Leaders of America (FCCLA)

    http://www.texasfccla.org

    STAR Events:

    • Teach and Train – An individual event that recognizes participants for their exploration of the education and training fields through research and hand-on experience.
    • Interpersonal Communication – An individual or team event that recognizes participants who use Family and Consumer Sciences and/or related occupations skills and apply communication techniques to develop a project designed to strengthen communication.
    • Job Interviewing – An individual event that recognizes participants who use Family and Consumer Sciences and/or related occupations skills to develop a portfolio, participate in an interview, and communicate a personal understanding of job requirements.

    SkillsUSA

    http://skillsusa.org

    Skills USA Events:

    • Early Childhood Education – an individual event that recognizes participants who demonstrate their knowledge of developmentally appropriate practice and their ability to prepare and implement learning activities for children 3 to 5 years old. Students will prepare a written lesson plan and take a written test assessing their knowledge of child development and effective teaching strategies.

    Texas Association of Future Educators (TAFE)

    http://tafeonline.org

    • Lesson Planning and Delivery Competition – This competition is an individual event where future educators will plan, prepare and deliver a lesson of their choosing to an actual classroom of students. Self-reflection following the lesson is an essential component of this competition as future educators begin the practice of honing their own teaching skills. Participants will prepare a lesson plan and a 10 minute video teaching the lesson to a class. The lesson can focus either on CTE, Humanities or STEM.
  • Service Learning Projects

    Successful service learning project ideas originate from student concerns and needs. Allow students to brainstorm about service projects pertaining to lesson. For additional information on service learning see http://www.servicelearningtexas.org

    Possible ideas:

    Students could set up a peer mediation program at their school.

    Students could create positive conflict resolution posters to post around the school building. They can offer tips and steps to resolving conflicts.

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