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Week One: Justification/Rationale for Artifacts in Domain A

Candee Edgar

National University

November 4, 2018

In partial fulfillment of the requirements for

TED 690 - Capstone Course

Instructor Clifton Johnson



This paper justifies and gives rationale for the selected artifacts which document evidence of my

competencies in Domain A (Making Subject Matter Comprehensible for Students) of my PDQP.

The first artifact is a detailed lesson plan of a first grade mathematics lesson in geometry on

dividing shapes into halves, fourths, and quarters. The second artifact is a short video clip

showing the actual lesson being presented described in artifact one; this video depicts students

learning about shapes using a variety of learning modalities, whole group discussions, small

group activities, hands-on-activities with differentiation incorporated to meet students’ needs.

The third artifact is a literature review that discusses how to make learning comprehensible in

mathematics for first graders by using daily math discussions.


Justification/Rationale for Artifacts in Domain A

The first artifact which I selected to include as evidence in Domain A (Making Subject Matter

Comprehensible to Students) of my PDQP is a detailed lesson plan of a first grade math lesson

which addresses specific pedagogical skills from a geometry unit of mathematics. This lesson

exemplifies every aspect of my performance competencies which are inclusively demonstrated in

designing, planning, and implementing a Common Core State Standard for math and how I make

it comprehensible for first graders. A very detailed rationale is stated for each part of this lesson:

instructional, materials needed, student activities, group collaborative activities, and assessment.

Prior to this lesson, each student’s needs were identified and evaluated. My students’ needs and

the pre-assessment results drive the lesson, and the on-going progress monitoring gives students

reinforcement and feedback, while informing me of what the students are able to comprehend.

The individual activity allows students to showcase their learning; this also demonstrates my

performance competencies in making subject matter comprehensible to my students. This artifact

showcases my understanding of the state-adopted academic standards and how my planning

addresses the needs of all students to make their learning of the math concept comprehensible.

The second artifact which I selected to represent evidence to document my performance

competencies in Domain A is a short video clip showing my first grade class as they experience

the math lesson described in artifact one. This artifact allows one to visually see the presentation

of the lesson’s introduction and instruction while students are receiving the math concepts in a

variety of learning modalities along with the use of visual representation using real-life scenarios

to help make the math concepts more comprehensible. Students are using hands-on-activities


which allow them to show their understanding on their own levels of math competency. You will

observe the students working in whole group and in partnered activities which allows them to

collaborate and hear others discuss their own understanding of what halves, fourths, and

quarters; this is exceptionally important for English Language learners to be able to hear other

students speak the new math vocabulary and give them time to practice with their peers. This

artifact coincides directly with what Costantino states, “…there is a direct correlation between

performance standards for students and performance standards for teachers. What teachers know

and are able to do is the most important influence on what students learn” (Costantino, De

Lorenzo, & Tirrell-Corbin, 2009, p. 11).

The third artifact selected is a literature review of an article, “Opening the World of

Mathematics: The Daily Math Discussion” by Zoe Donoahue which describes how first graders

learn to theorize and explain their thinking by using daily math discussions about real-world

problems within a secure environment (Donoahue, 2016, p. 428). The types of routines which

Donoahue discusses and utilizes daily in her math class serve as on-going progress monitoring

which provides her students a comprehensible way of understanding the mathematics content

being presented. This article was selected to show the relationship between using a daily math

discussion to elicit students’ comprehension of the mathematical ideas, theories, and concepts

within a secure environment. The reflection of Domain A is evident in this article when one

reads the first graders’ discussions detailing which concepts the students have acquired.

Encouraging students to construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others is an

exemplary tool to make subject matter comprehensible to students.



Costantino, P., De Lorenzo, M., & Tirrell-Corbin, C. (2009). Developing a professional teaching

portfolio: A guide for success. (3rd ed.) Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Pearson.

Donoahue, Z. (2016). Opening the world of mathematics: The daily math discussion. Teaching

Children with Mathematics, 22 (7), pp. 428-433.