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EDU 431: Methods of Teaching Math and Science

Portfolio Submission
By: Alexandra Spyrakos
Program Standard
Professional Practice: Members apply professional knowledge and experience to promote student
learning. They use appropriate pedagogy, assessment and evaluation, resources and technology in
planning for and responding to the needs of individual students and learning communities.
Members refine their professional practice through ongoing inquiry, dialogue and reflection.
Artifact Description
The artifact which I am submitting as a reflection of my growth of the above standard is my
Teaching Seminar Lesson Plan. In being given this task, I was able to construct my own lesson
using the mathematics curriculum for a grade four mock lesson. The teaching seminar was a
twenty minute presentation of the anticipatory section of my lesson plan. The presentation included
a short activity with grade four place value. Through this assignment, I was able to obtain a
thorough understanding of the expectations required for mathematics. In doing so, I was able to
experience the efforts and preparation of teaching as well as how to establish an effective lesson in
mathematics that can improve student learning. I was able to determine my own personal teaching
strategies that will be beneficial for my future career in teaching students about mathematics.
Artifact Rationale:
The teaching seminar assignment provided a constructivist approach to teaching. The assignment
encompasses all of the necessary concepts that can assist future teachers in providing and
ensuring success for our students not only in mathematics, but throughout their education.
According to James Hiebert and Douglas A. Grouws, it is the teacher that makes a difference in
the classroom. The nature of a mathematics classroom, and by using a more kinaesthetic style of
teaching, students are more likely to remember the information being taught to them, as well as the
have a significant high effects on the level of student learning (Hiebert, 2007). Through this
assignment, one is able to understand how students develop knowledge of mathematical terms.
Students are able to become familiar with mathematical concepts in a kinaesthetic way. Thus, it is
important for educators to invite and encourage students to participate in whole group activities.
According to the Ontario College of Teachers, the standard of Professional Practice provides future
educators with the necessary concepts to effectively promote student learning. In order to become
an effect educator, one must use various strategies to teach in a lesson, for a variety of different
learners to determine which approach promotes student learning (Lipika, 2000). Through this type
of assignment, one can acknowledge the different types of learners and cater to those strengths
using mathematics. Not only do we as teachers provide students with knowledge, our
commitment, and care, we are responsible for creating the means necessary for our future
students to be successful. Conclusively, by being advocates of the Ontario College of Teachers
program standards, our assignment demonstrates our abilities to use our knowledge and capability
to effectively enhance student learning.

Reflection:
Through this lesson plan assignment, we learned the importance of creating an effective lesson
plan. Before completing this assignment, I believed that I had a clear understanding of how to
construct a successful lesson plan. However, I was surprised to see that there was much more to
learn about the proper concepts and procedures in creating a lesson plan. This assignment has
prepared me with the specific expectations listed in the Ontario Curriculum for mathematics, ways
in which we as educators can go about teaching the lesson. While working on my teaching
seminar assignment, I was able to explore different concepts in mathematics. Growing up I was
never a strong learner in mathematics. Most of the concepts used in preparing my lesson, I was
able to re-teach myself in order to complete my lesson plan. Through this, I was able to construct
an effective teaching seminar for my fellow classmates, only using the anticipatory section of my
completed lesson plan. Through the activity I had used, it was great to see the active participation
from my fellow colleagues. It is essential for educators to encourage participation within the
classroom. By doing so, the teacher is promoting and maintaining a great learning environment.
Participation is a vital component to successful student learning. It enables students to create and
enhance a comprehensive and well-rounded education, as well as an understanding of
collaboration. I found this assignment to be extremely beneficial. In being given this task, it has
enabled us as future educators to improve our understanding and perspectives of different
strategies in creating a lesson plan and delivering a lesson, as well as how we can accommodate
the needs of all students.

References:
Hiebert, J., & Grouws, D. A. (2007). The effects of classroom mathematics teaching on students
learning. Second handbook of research on mathematics teaching and learning, 1, 371-404.
Home | Ontario College of Teachers. (n.d.). Retrieved March 2nd 2016, from http://www.oct.ca/
home.aspx

Lipka, R. (2000). The Role of Self in Teacher Development. SUNY Press.