An Essential Guide to Hands-On Learning: Learning Plans and Learning Diversity by Renée Berg
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Looking for the perfect gift for a new or beginning teacher? Well I think I have one for ya! I got this book off of my Amazon prime membership and had it for month on my kindle.For someone getting into teaching or at the start of thei career this would be a little nifty book for them to have. During their first several years of teaching they are sure to refer to it often.For me most of the material that was covered in this book was stuff that I had learned while pursuing my credential and my 15 years of teaching. Nothing new for me here nor for more experienced teachers.
When I first read the title I was expecting a book that was loaded with hands on projects that I could do in the classroom. Well the book has guidelines and is loaded with other information that a teacher would find useful but no project. THe title threw me off a bit. It is the other information that I found useful plus there were resources and references that a beginning teacher could use for later in their career.
One of several things i liked about the book was the positive philosophy put forward by the author. Her opinions on teaching to the test resonate real strong with me. It depersonalizes learning and it is not fun. Each individual is a unique individual with his or her own learning style which is just as unique as their DNA. The term she uses are more positive as well., Remember that words for our reality. You are not teaching someone a lesson, that has a negative connotation. Instead you are creating a learning experience for them something that is low anxiety and very enjoyable. Remember chgildren learn best in a positive environment.
One of the greats is the numerous links to awesome websites. Among the websites are enchantedlearning.com and the turnthepage.com. These websites have downloadable activities and children's books. This is most likely put up by teachers and new teachers remember no one is as smart as us put together. Collaboration yields great results. There are also resources where teachers can get supplies or borrow supplies. As teachers you will have to pull from a variety of sources including recycling or reusing stuff like show boxes and plastic bottles. Here are some great websites childaware.org and discountschool supply.com
One thing that is really important for youngsters is fostering independence. Don't do things for them rather let them figure it out, at first. If the youngster gets real frustrated then help them out. Of course when introducing new material a teacher should alway give the needed instruction. When children get into disagreements get them to work out the solution. When children are expressing themselves get them to use their own words. THis is very valuable when dealing with acting out behavior. Get them to express it in words.
When generating your learning plan (aka Lesson Plan) preparation and planning is everything. Have several activities lined up in case the main one you planned did not work out. The author gives several models of lesson plans and systems of evaluating work. When you submit your lesson plains they will have an objective, alignment to state standard and will target one or more learning domains. These domains are emotional development, social development, cognitive development, physical development and creative expression. Emotion pertains to feeling and how to express them, social is how to get along and interact with other,cognitive is developing academic skills,physical is developing physical skills and coordination while creative is stimulated by art and creative writing. THere are also several different types of learner. The word normal is really obsolete. You have gifted learner, wswho being smart may have social deficits and will require more challenging projects that use investigation., you have ell English Language learner, AUtistic Spectrum, Add/adhd, learning disabilities etc. All these are explained in full and in the book it is loaded with accommodations. Neww teachers take note.
Remember keep learning positive. Process over product, mistakes are part of the learning process.
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