A Journey Through Technology

What are the most important things to remember when observing your students?

on October 14, 2015

observationsinfographic

Rationale:

My infographic contains my key points for conducting effective classroom observations. The teacher needs to be in a position where they can see all of the students, and should be standing to show students they are involved in the class. One way of recording data while observing is to use a code sheet so simple marks can be made instead of writing large amounts of information. It is important to remain unbiased during the observation as well, so the observer should not include thoughts and opinions as part of the observation data. It’s also important to note that you can’t see everything, so pick certain things you wish to observe before hand. This can include the location, the students, what is happening during the activity, conversations that might be occurring,

References

Cohen, D., & Crabtree, B. (2006, July 1). Observation. Retrieved October 14, 2015.

Linsin, M. (2012, December 15). Why You Should Observe Your Students More. Retrieved October 14, 2015.

Merriam, S., & Tisdell, E. (2016). Qualitative research: A guide to design and implementation (4th ed.). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Trochim, W. (2006, October 20). Qualitative Methods. Retrieved October 13, 2015.

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6 responses to “What are the most important things to remember when observing your students?

  1. Tristan says:

    I agree, it is so difficult to see everything that is happening. I think I have like 7 things on my code sheet that are fairly basic and easy to observe and I have a hard time with all the activity that is going on in class plus maintaining classroom management. It’s interesting to see the difference between observing students on a daily basis for understanding and observing students for a specific purpose such as our research project.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sarah K says:

      What are the 7 things you are looking for? I’m also having a hard time keeping up with the activity and keeping control of the classroom. I think I’m trying to focus too much on each student, and need to come up with a better way of observing the class as a whole.

      Like

      • Tristan Leiter says:

        Participation in discussion, scan class every five minutes and mark whether they are on task or off (but I only have 7 so this is pretty easy compared to a class of 25, but still more difficult than I originally thought), how many times they talked to me about general things, if they made eye contact, if they were prepared for class, and how many math questions they asked me. We only had one day of class that I could actually observe last week because we had conferences, so I’m hoping as the days/weeks go on it gets easier, I’m sure it will.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. tmerculief says:

    Sarah- I love your infographic! Nice job! Yes I found that out when trying to observe. You can’t get everything down so that is good to focus on a few points. I need to remember that. Noce job!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. pwjohnsen says:

    “It is important to remain unbiased during the observation as well, so the observer should not include thoughts and opinions as part of the observation data.” I believe this is so important. In fact, I believe this can be applied to many parts of teaching. Yes, there comes a time to interpret and analyze. But, I think that we should stick to facts more often, especially when it comes to behavior. “It’s also important to note that you can’t see everything, so pick certain things you wish to observe before hand.” This is probably my biggest downfall. I want to see and record everything. I often bite off more than I can chew. I am really going to try to remain focused during my observsations.

    Liked by 1 person

    • clindquist17 says:

      I agree with Peter. It is important to stick to the facts and not let our own biases get mixed up in our teaching or observing, especially in regards to student behavior. I also want to see and record everything. I feel like I need to video record my research so I can see things that I missed.

      Liked by 1 person

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