10.17.2006

Observations galore

As it turns out, I got 3 seperate reviews returned from different observations I have had returned to me today...

Unfortunately, the one I care about the most was the one that I am most dissapointed in.
--This was the observation done by my vice principal- who, in my opinion ruined my observation himself. He maked me proficient overall (the options are unsatisfactory, basic, proficient, and distinguished). I don't mind the overall rating-- it is the facty that thi is possibly the worst observation I have ever had returned to me-- yet this is most certainly the best and most productive chunk of time in whih I have had as a teacher thus far. This, to me is concerning. He marked me "basic" in a few specific areas:

"Designing coherent instruction"- this one really makes me mad ecause this is where HE interferred. He didnt stay out of MY lesson. When my students were working in cooperative groups, he was working with them and instructing the-- when it was meant to be a lesson of discovery for the students. I was using all of the fancy strategies that I learn at the workshops THEY send me to... he just apparantly missed the memo on that one!

"using questioning and discussion techniques"- First-- my kids were asked to relate themselves to a folk-tale that they read by recalling a time that they told a lie that was meant to protect someone, then they were asked to write an alternate ending to the folktale and projecting how it might've turned out if the lie had not been told-- pretty frickin higher order if you ask me!! Relating yourself to the world in context of text is high on Blooms, or am I wrong? Second-- my kids were working in cooperative learning groups! If you have kids working with one another to discuss a story, i think that is pretty intense discussion going on, because it is meaningful and STUDENT generated. Isn't that where they're supposed to be as 4th-6th graders??

There was also one about not being responsive-- ad that one just pisses me off... I am in a BD class. If I weren't responsive and able to react, i wouldn't be here to complain about this-- and my students wouldn't either.

That's all-- everyhthing else was marked proficient, but some of it shouldn't have been-- mainly the one about submitting paperwork ontime... Like I said, overall he still marked me proficient-- but I still think that it was a pretty unfair assessment!

-- Okay, the next thing I got tday was a TFA observation-- basically all it said was that I am patient, and my calmness sets a good atmosphere for my classroom-- that was a good one I guess... really it just sounded SO TFA.

-- Last there was the CMCD observation-- it is the program that my school has adopte school-wide to make sure that we have "Cooperative Management and Consistancy Development." I had all of my artifacts in place, and my class was running really smoothly this morning, so I got 100% (yea, they give you a percent-- weird, I know!) Anyway, I guess that's all good... but I'm still upset about the REAL observation.

It just doesn't feel fair to me that my classroom is running better than EVER, and EVERYONE says and talks about the significant changes they have seem in my students from last year to this year, yet I am getting the worst observation review returned to me that I have ever had. I don't understand where they think these changes are coming from if they don't think that I am doing anything better this year. At the end of last year I was getting "distinguished" marks on my observations. This year things are otably different, and I am getting "basic" on some of the areas that I think are going best!

Oh, frustration....

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