Monday, October 17, 2011

Teacher's TV Video: Anatomy of a Lesson

Episode 1: Classroom Event

Lost knowledge during discussion of the group findings

Feedback is only one-way during this episode, i.e. to the teacher. Students do not write down any of the points which are brought up, so such information and meaning is lost. The question is: In the end, what will the students get from this lesson? Will they get anything meaningful?

Episode 2: Feedback

'Private and confidential' feedback

When students were asked to give feedback, they raised boards with their answers which only the teacher saw. This creates a more secure classroom environment.

Overall, I think the lesson was student-centred, since the students were given the initiative to indulge in groupwork, discussions etc. The teacher was just taking care of the agenda of activities.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

A teachers' TV Programme: Anatomy of a Lesson

Episode 1: Classroom event
Station work catered for different learning styles. Tasks to get the children thinking - inquiry based learning.
Feedback - "who feeds from feedback? Is it the teacher or the learners?" In this case the whiteboards were used as a means of assessment (for the teacher), which is quick & effective.

Episode 2: Feedback
Idea of an inclusive classroom - teacher sat down & talked with the group. She also tried to include all students in the group.

The good comments proposed by the students at the end of the lesson aren't being recorded neither by the teacher nor the students themselves. So ultimately they have been 'lost' - individuals feeding back to the teacher. When giving feedback, teachers must ask themselves: "How does this work as feedback? Is it beneficial or just a means of 'doing' feedback?"

Thinking more about the more complex pedagogic practices: saying less & facilitating more in terms of pupil's learning.

HW-Analogies at O Level.

1.One particular analogy I use is when explaining the fact that enzymes are catalysts.

A cake mixer is used to mix the ingredients of a cake faster. However it does not become part of the cake itself.

Enzymes make a reaction go faster but they do not form part of the reaction itself.....enzymes are instruments.....they are catalysts.

2. I find the Lock and Key model explaining the specificity of enzymes very clear. I literally refer to the lock and key in the lab door......that there is one paricular key for that one particular substrate for one particular active site.

I use analogies to clarify a point...but would change it if students are lead to misconceptions.

Good day...even though it's raining!!

HW-Anatomy of lesson

Event: The teacher gave chn tasks which they could handle but at the same time she was probing for new ideas...moving them out from what they knew... at the same time chn had the support and the presence /input of their friends.

I liked the idea of her sitting with chn in groups....she had very good eye contact and very good non-verbal communication......chn seemed to feel included.

Feedback: Chn discussed and wrote.....they could see she was wholly involved with giving them attention, and helping them think.

There was a moment when she read the chn's whiteboards ....but the other chn could not see what their friends wrote.
There was a good point ,besides her own 6,which she acknowledged but did not write on board-probably that was lost.

Saturday, October 15, 2011


The analogies I use in Physics, the ones I can remember right now, are in the explanation of how the particles behave in expansion and contraction. I resemble particles to people.. when the temperature rises, people need more space and so move slightly away from each other, so expansion takes place and when the temperature decreases, contraction takes place and people cuddle up and so move closer together. The flaw of this analogy is that in water, when temperature decreases, ice takes more space than in liquid form.

I also use analogies with specific heat capacity .. resemble low specific heat capacity with someone who has low tolerance and is therefore very impatient so his temperature rises very quickly, and high specific heat capacity with someone who has a high tolerance and so his temperature rises slowly.

I think that such analogies are good for O' Level, for a certain level of knowledge, but will not probably use them with higher levels because I expect more depth in knowledge. In my opinion analogies can only be used to a certain extent.

Teacher's TV

Classroom Event:

The fact that during group work, the teacher was a good guide/facilitator of what what was happening in the groups and was going around guiding the groups what to do. The students were free to do the work however they could have asked for help if it was needed

I also like the idea of sitting with some of the students at a time and discussing with them. I have used it sometimes and I noticed that students focus more. Having said that, the other students must be doing some type of work and not left waiting.


In my opinion it was given from a constructivist point of view. I think both the speakers had constructivism at the back of their mind especially during the seconds half of the feedback. This is because they said that:
  • it was not healthy that the teacher had a rigid lesson structure in mind,
  • teacher holds pupils back from exploring further into the subject.
  • teacher is not flexible enough for what the students were asking.
  • teacher was not fully able to respond to what happened and what pupils said in the lesson.
  • They also said 'Fixing the knowledge...' meaning that knowledge already existed within the pupils.
Thank you.


Analogy in Cell Biology

Hey people,

This is an analogy I use in my teachings:

  • Function of a nucleus of a cell in a group of cells (tissue).

Office Tower ---> Tissue (group of cells)
1 Office ---> 1 Cell
Table, chair, shelves, computer ---> Organelles in a cell (e.g. ribosomes, mitochondria etc)
Computer ---> Nucleus
Programmes in a computer e.g. Microsoft Word ---> DNA
Protein e.g. eye pigment protein ---> Typed Letter

This Analogy works in all levels of education.