Curriculum Connection Lesson Plan Essay
I believe that in order to successfully teach the class it is important to have the right atmosphere in the class. Without this atmosphere no learning will happen because the students will not be able to ease their minds. When students have problems with the class they shut down their minds and do not learn. To make sure that this does not happen we need to create an environment where the students have open minds which can only happen in a comfortable environment. To me it is important for the students to work both in groups and individually. Both of these have their own strengths and weaknesses which enable students to grow. Group tasks involve trusting others and helping others out which helps the students feel more comfortable because they are with their peers. On the other hand individual tasks help the students feel empowered because they realize that they are the boss and that they can do what they want to do (Stensvold & Wilson, 1990).
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This empowerment is necessary for personal growth. Working with others is also a necessary skill that much be learnt to lead a successful life. The way I see it, one of the most important things there is in classrooms is trust. The teacher is going to try to have the students learn new and exciting things. This is only possible when the students trust the teacher because they will only open up their minds to trusted people. If the students do not trust the teacher they will not believe the teacher which means they will not learn what they are meant to learn. The best type of teachers are the constructivist teachers who relate subjects to the student’s personal lives and enable their students to think creatively and solve problems. To successfully create this trust the teacher must work according to the cultural orientation of the students. Students that come from different areas generally have a different perspective on things. In order to break down their boundaries and make them understand things it is necessary to understand their culture and work accordingly (Willingham, 2005).
The lesson plans fit together very well because they progress in a proper manner. From lesson plan 1’s basic moves to the bit more sophisticated moves of lesson plan 2 and the advanced moves in lesson plan 3, everything connects. Moves like turn left 4 times will help the children very much in remembering and learning how to count by 2’s. Similarly telling the children to roll left five times in a low level will help them in learning to count by 5’s. These types of activities are bound to help the children in learning these skills. Kinesthetic learning can do wonders for people; and this is particularly why I truly believe that these activities will work for the students in my classroom. It has been shown that people have a harder time studying if they have to sit still and memorize and learn. On the other hand if they have to do some action along with the learning they have been proven to learn better and remember things for a much longer time when compared to the traditional method of learning (Omrod, 2008).
Since my class is in an area with a lot of diversity, students from all walks of life will be attending. This means that I have students that come from middle class and low class families. The students also have different skin colors, different countries of origins and many other different origins. This is why the music chosen in all lesson plans has been selected because it had the ability to connect with all types of people without offending anyone. The reason that this dance concept is important is that math has always been a hard thing for children to grasp. Even I had some problems with math in the beginning. The reason for this is simple; math is basically about working with imaginary numbers. 2+2=4 is a simple thing for us because we understand what 2 represents but harder for children because they do not. This dance concept gives children a better understand of math by integrating it in the dance concept. It visualizes the numbers which helps these 1st grade students make sense of these numbers which will help them deeply in understanding the concepts (Harold, 2008).
The California Academic Standards for Dance dictate that dance lessons should involve locomotor and axial movements and allow the children to understand oral instructions and act accordingly (Omrod, 2008). The National Dance Standards developed by the Consortium of National Arts Education Association says that we should understand dance as a way to create and communicate meaning. The California State Framework for Visual and Performing art specifies that children should be able to modify their movements on the basis of force and energy and should be able to join the dance moves to create a dynamic flow (Coffield, Moseley, Hall & Ecclestone, 2004). In the lesson plan one the focus of the dance content is on time and teaching children how to move according to the varying speeds of the song. Three different songs have been selected one that is slow, one that is moderate and one that can be classified as fast. By having the students respond to the speed of the music we will be teaching them how to move according to context which fits in perfectly with the requirements told in the California State Framework for Visual and Performing arts (Constantinidou & Baker, 2002).
The focus of the second lesson plan is teaching children the conc kids how to move according to space. The focus of the third lesson plan again focuses on time but goes a bit deeper than lesson 1. Here I will teach them math skip counting by 10 by having them do a series of locomotor and nonlocomotor moves with varioation of direction and size. The students will learn how to move in different spaces, speeds and directions while also learning to count in 2’s, 5’s and 10’s due to kinesthetic learning (Harold, 2008). I will then ask the students to move by themselves according to different songs in order to check how much of the lessons they understood. I will then reflect upon their learning and tweak my teaching methods accordingly. I will make sure that the children trust me. I will approach them in a friendly manner and I will always reward creativity. Children should learn how to free their minds and not be afraid of being creative. The materials needed for these lesson plans would be:
- Songs from Disney Movies
- Brain-Compatible Dance Education by Anne Green Gilbert
- Coffield, F., Moseley, D., Hall, E., & Ecclestone, K. (2004). Learning styles and pedagogy in post-16 learning. A systematic and critical review. London: Learning and Skills Research Centre.
- Constantinidou, F., & Baker, S. (2002). Stimulus modality and verbal learning performance in normal aging. Brain and language, 82, pp296–311.
- Harold Pashler, M. M. (2008). Learning Styles: Concepts and Evidence. Psychological Science in Public Interest, pp105-119.
- Ormrod, J.E. (2008). Educational psychology: Developing learners 6th ed.. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.
- Stensvold, M.S., & Wilson, J.T. (1990). The interaction of verbal ability with concept mapping in learning from a chemistry laboratory activity. Science Education, 74, 473–480.
- Willingham, D.T. (2005, Summer). Do visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learners need visual, auditory, and kinesthetic instruction? American Educator, 29(2), 31–35.