Annotated Bibliography

Annotated Bibliography

Michelina Miedema

Lesson Study Cycle 1

Fall Trimester 2019 

EDU 570: Inquiry to Practice 

 

Ferlazzo, L. (2011, May 8). “Involvement or Engagement - Schools. Families, Communities.” Educational Leadership, vol. 68, no.

This study focused on family to school connections. It explains how these connections should be built on listening, and shared decision making rather than: "Hello, is this John's mother? This is his English teacher, Mr. Ferlazzo. John has had a rough day." "I like teaching in this school because the parents don't bother us much."  "We need parent volunteers to bake cookies for the fund-raiser."(Ferlazzo, 2011)

According to this article, we need to differentiate between family involvement and family engagement. “One of the dictionary definitions of involve is to enfold or envelope, whereas one of the meanings of engage is to come together.”(Ferlazzo, 2011) A suggested way to build these relationships is through home visits. Home visits provide an opportunity for families and teachers to connect! Teachers can learn about the lives of their students to build empathy and make connections. Parents can see teachers as human beings outside of the classroom, rather than just a teacher. Sadly, not all schools are able to do home visits. They are challenging to schedule, and often teachers are doing this outside of their salary hours. It would be ideal if this was somehow carved into the first weeks of school. 

 

Kohn, A. (2001, September). Five Reasons to Stop Saying “Good Job!”. Retrieved from https://www.alfiekohn.org/article/choices-children/

This article discusses positive reinforcement as a euphemism. It explains how common it is to hear someone say “good job!” especially to young people. Khon wonders who is benefiting from praising things that should already be happening (cleaning up, getting  work done, etc.) “it’s a way of doing something to children to get them to comply with our wishes.” (Khon, 2001) The article discusses how praise is helpful in the moment, but not in the long run. Just like giving out rewards. It can be a detriment to intrinsic motivation and ultimately make students less likely to persevere through challenging tasks. 

Khon makes the point then we are saying “good job” to children we are in a directly telling them how to feel. They should be able to enjoy this feeling on their own, especially when they are doing an expected task. Teachers will also praise children when they notice them getting board, in hopes to re-spark their interest. Research found that “kids who are praised for doing well at a creative task tend to stubble at the next task - and they don’t do as well  as children who weren’t praised to begin with. “(Khon, 2001)

 

I am always looking for ways to boost my student’s intrinsic motivation and this article made me think about how often I find myself using the words “good job” throughout the school day. It is crazy to think that a simple phrase that we say all the time can be harmful. I wonder why it is that us as adults find the need to say “good job” so often? I wonder if it is a way for us to make a connection and a way for us to show others we are happy with them. It can be really hard to shift language but I am going to try my best to avoid this as much as possible. The article suggests that you simply say what you saw giving an example of “you put your shoes on by yourself.” (Khon 2001)

 

Firlik, R. (2003). Early Years Summit: Preschool-Kindergarten Collaboration Makes a Difference. YC Young Children, 58 (1), 63-78.

This article was about how preschool teachers and public school kindergarten teachers  in Connecticut collaborated to create a more successful learning environment for children.  New Canaan Connecticut is an affluent town that pays its public school teachers the highest salary in the state (Firlik, 2003). “The families tend to be highly competitive politically conservate and financially successful. Particularly noteworthy is their eagerness to bring their childrearing and school related concerns to the staff of their respective preschools and public schools.” (Firlik, 2003)

The preschool educators and directors believed that kindergarten teachers ran a “kind of boot camp mentality.”(Firlik, 2003)  this misunderstanding worried preschool families and caused confusion and concern. When questioned about this, the public school directors and teachers were surprised and realize that they needed  to create a better system of communication between preschool and kindergarten. They decided to collaborate through a series of meetings. They talked about things like kindergarten standards and expectations and figured out how they could be in line with preschools. This was the very first time that preschool educators sat down and collaborated with public school educators. The kindergarten teachers have a strong child-focused philosophy. By collaborating, the preschool and public schools were able to redefine their curricula in a way that supports all children’s learning, regardless if they had 0-3 years of preschool before entering. To conclusion was  “to encourage children to explore, to wonder, to imagine, to experiment with language and materials, to play, and to develop a lifelong love of learning.” 

While reading this article, I thought about the importance of collaborating with outside educators. For my interview this week I decided to collaborate with the speech pathologist who comes to our school a few days a week. I don’t see her often because she pulls students out of my class, so I felt like this was a great opportunity to reach out about some strategies that might be helpful for focus student B (which is a student who receives her services )

 

S. Cooper  (personal communication, September, 2019)

How is focus student B doing? What are his strengths and what has been challenging for him so far? 

According to S. Cooper (personal communication, Oct, 2019) Focus student B is doing amazing! He is joyful during their sessions and is eager to participate in all games and activities. He loves to tell stories about video games and youtube.  He is easily distracted by things in the room, but is also easily redirected.  

I am working to engage focus student B in group work, what are some strategies that I can use to get him involved in this process?

According to S. Cooper (personal communication, Oct, 2019) Focus student B should be placed in a group with students he trusts. He can be very shy around people before he gets to know them, and I think that putting him with the right people would be the key for his success. When he becomes nervous he tends to shut down and it can be hard to bring him back. So maybe the group choices, and also room placement. He does best in quiet setting so maybe his group can be further away from the whole class? Like on the rug or in a quiet corner.

How can I set up classmates to support him while I am not there to help? 

I like to give sentence starters to Focus student B, it might be helpful to ask his group mates to do that as well? Or ask him prompting questions, kids love asking questions so that could be an easy thing to implement, partners asking each other questions.

Is there anything I can do to reinforce your teaching?

I think that Focus student B is doing great! It is helpful for him to sit in the front row or near an aid in the classroom to help keep him focused, and to make sure that he is hearing and receiving information. You can have him resay sentences that are challenging to understand, and ask him to say each word slowly. 

 

Pyle, A., Prioletta, J., & Poliszczuk, D. (2018). The Play-Literacy Interface in Full-day Kindergarten Classrooms. Early Childhood Education Journal, 46(1), 117-127.

This article discusses the fine line between play and play based learning in literacy.  The study used interviews from 12 teachers. The data revealed to groups of teachers, the play and development group separated play and learning, and the integrated play and learning group  combined play and learning. (Pyle, et al 2018) It also emphasizes the importance of literacy in education and states that “ children who develop these skills earlier demonstrate better academic learning, both in the early years and in later schooling.”(Pyle, et al 2018) It also mentions that play is important for children’s learning. They are able to learn social skills as well as fine motor skills and many more. Play can help young children solidify learning, transfer skills and create connections. (Pyle, et al 2018) Although integrating play is important, the study acknowledges that it can be challenging to implement while also hitting academic standards. There are different perspectives among teachers when it comes to play based learning. Some found it important to separate the two, while others believe play to be important in developing academic skills. (Pyle, et al 2018) The results of this study show that teachers are using play in all different ways in kindergarten classrooms.  (Pyle, et al 2018)

 

I have witnessed integrated play and learning integrated beautifully in a  Kindergarten classroom in Chula Vista. Woven through each lesson were dashes of song and movement, or imaginative pieces. The classroom engages many students and was always joyful! I used this article as inspiration to add play to our lesson study. Because we are teaching literacy, I decided to “songify” the instructions of the lesson. In order to gain a little more insight I interviewed the teacher of the classroom I mentioned above. 

 

R. Biocarles-Rydeen (personal communication, September, 2019)

 

As an advocate for play based learning, what do you find most successful for students growth and learning?

I believe that play is such a natural way that human beings learn. Play is joyful, meaningful and social.  Children (and adults) tend to have a different level of investment and engagement when learning through play. I've found that the outcomes of playful learning go beyond academic skills and often tap into skills that will support children throughout their lives (flexibility, perseverance, empathy, creativity, etc.).

 

What parts of integrating learning and play do you find challenging? And what parts are easy?

I think the biggest challenge for me right now is the documentation. How do you help people understand all the learning happening in play when they say, "Oh, they are just playing." The key to sharing this learning with all stakeholders is by making their learning visible through documentation. Pedagogical documentation requires intention and attention.  Taking notes, transcriptions, photographs, and video as well as analyzing the data and making it visible through curation adds another layer of work to our lists as teachers. But it is essential to this work. I wish I could do it better and some years have been better than others (**I wrote a piece about my circus project and have some video based on the level of documentation I did throughout that project--if you ever want to see it ;)**) .  It is definitely my professional goal this year.

 

I think what has gotten easier for me is finding ways to incorporate play, art, movement, and experiential experiences into their "academic" subjects.  Through social media, we have access to so many great and creative ideas. We are also fortunate to work in an organization of collaboration and sharing.  If I need more support in how to make a task feel more playful, I can often reach out to the "genius in our building" (which is part of the foundation of the way we approach projects at HTH).  I have found our Exploratory colleagues (Performing Arts with Latanya, Art with Amber, STEAM with Shar, and Engineering/Design with the great Zoe Randall) to be these brilliant resources. They do playful work with our children everyday.  I often go to them if I need thought partners on provocations or support around how to make a task feel more playful, joyful, creative, and hands-on. I always reach out to Amber and Shar to think through curation ideas and strengthen art pieces.

 

Why do you think combining play and literacy is beneficial for kindergarten?

Play is how young children develop language and literacy! Oral language development is the foundation of literacy and children naturally use and experiment with language in their play.  Kindergarten classrooms in the United States are continually becoming more and more academic and looking more like what first grade has looked like in the past. This is especially true for language and literacy instruction even though research supports play based experiences in the early years. Playful literacy capitalizes on what children do naturally.  By carefully preparing an environment rich in community, rich in stories and ample opportunities to play, teachers can create the conditions in which children want to seek and share stories. This becomes the foundation of Story Workshop--developing the conditions in which children seek and share stories. It helps create this "intellectual urgency'--the motivation to crack the code so they can learn more about their peers, environment, and the rest of the world.  And of course, share their stories with their community and the outside world. Suddenly, there is more investment, experimentation, and curiosity with phonics, new vocabulary, writing, etc.

 

What tips do you have for educators who are skeptical about play based learning? 

Be Brave and trust the process! Stay open to possibilities.

 

Forslund Frykedal, K., & Hammar Chiriac, E. (2018). Student Collaboration in Group Work: Inclusion as Participation. International Journal of Disability, Development and Education, 65(2), 183-198. 

This article was based on a study done in Sweden aimed at investigating student’s “inclusive and collaborative processes in group work and how the teacher supported or impede these transactions.” (Forslund & Hammar 2018) The student results show that students “active practice participation in the discussions around the group work structures and analytical discussions, together with the teacher’s more defined feedback and avoidance of the traditional authoritative role, are examples of prerequisites for group work to be enacted in an inclusive manner.” (Forslund & Hammar 2018) They studied students interactions and collaboration while working on a task in a group. They used the following five principles known as  “Black-Hawkins conceptualisation of participation: (a) participation concerns all members of a class and all aspects of classroom life; (b) participation and barriers to participation are inter-connected and continual; (c) participation is concerned with responses to diversity; (d) participation is based on relationships of mutual recognition and acceptance; (e) participation requires learning to be active and collaborative.”(Forslund & Hammar 2018))

 

The study was done on an elementary school class split up into six small groups of mixed gender, mixed ability, and each with a member that has swedish as a second language. The study observed the interactions between group members. They concluded that participation and inclusiveness where “mutually dependent elements, requiring learning to be active and collaborative. Collaboration, in turn, is when students actively work together and with the teacher, shifting the nature of authority to the group.” (Forslund & Hammar 2018)Groups that were about to seek positive interdependence, obtained more opportunities to be inclusive and collaborate. Positive interdependence also promoted interactions and and accountability amongst group members.  When the teachers asked the students questions and gave feedback about the task, it resulted in more “opportunities to be accountable, both at the individual and group level, thereby enabling them to take greater responsibility for the group's collective work. “ (Forslund & Hammar 2018)

 

This study made me really think about the ways that I spread out my time while my students are in group work. It can be really hard to not get caught up with one group, especially if they are having a challenging time. I think that based off of this study, it would be wise of me to try to do a quick sweep of the room and begin with providing each group with constructive feedback, and inquiring questions. It would be even better if I could time myself and make sure that I meet with each group, before really spending a lot of time with groups I feel are struggling. Often time in kindergarten during group work there are tears, because of course, cooperation is hard! Especially at the egocentric age of five! 

 

S. Miedema (personal communication, October, 2019)

What does group work look like in your kindergarten classroom?

In my classroom, group work looks like team building.  Student may choose theirs or be assigned to a group. It is to build community and share.

What scaffolds have you used to set the students up for success?

The foundations that have been set are to respect others, to be kind and to communicate, especially since this is a kindergarten, a foundation of learning.  Teamwork is built based upon these foundational principles, leading to successful teamwork.

What strategies do you use to circulate the room and guide them through the task?

I use turn and talks often.  They present opportunities for me to observe student interactions and check for understanding.  When students turn and talk to partners, they often interact with a variety of students and may discover different viewpoints.

 

How often are you engaged with the students and how often are you observing? If ever, because that can be challenging in a kindergarten classroom?

I am often engaged with students and rarely observing.  The best opportunity for me to observe is during outside play.  In the classroom, I am either presenting lessons, leading a class meeting or lesson, or supporting learning.  It is rare to sit and observe. Having said that, I do make strong efforts to observe as I feel it is the best venue for learning about the students.

 

Cavanaugh, D., Clemence, M., Teale, K., Rule, J., & Montgomery, M. (2017). Kindergarten Scores, Storytelling, Executive Function, and Motivation Improved through Literacy-Rich Guided Play. Early Childhood Education Journal, 45(6), 831-843.

 This study looked at kindergarten students from different socioeconomic backgrounds at two different elementary schools participating in sociodramatic guided play.” (Cavanaugh et al. 2017) each student participated in literacy instruction with an additional fifteen minute block of play-based literacy. Students used toys and materials to practice sounds and letters, and to play literacy based games. According to Piaget’s and Vygotshy’s work, play is an important part of literacy because it encourages relationships between language and letters, helping students make connections. Cavanaugh et al. 2017) This study sought to figure out how guided play in literacy lessons compared to non play based literacy lessons.The results of this study showed that students scored higher on assessments and standardized tests who were exposed to play based literacy instruction. Cavanaugh 2017)

 

The research suggests that adding tangible elements of play or other opportunities such as dramatizing literacy, or singing literacy, can be helpful for students. As we work to iron out each element of our lesson, I am finding more places in which I can invite room for play. We added a song to the instructions, which the students LOVE. They remember the lyrics, therefore they are remembering the instructions. I am thinking about their conversation as dramatic play because they are working to solve problems for a task that I have assigned them. They will use a talking stick to channel their voices and, hopefully to practice taking turns. 

 

Roh, T., & Lee, Y. (2018). Teacher repetition as an instructional resource for classroom interaction: Three pedagogical actions in kindergartens in an EFL context. System, 74, 121-137.

This article was written about a study about how teacher moves, in association with repeated language, effect  a L2 class. The analyses of the classroom found three different “pedagogical actions arising from teacher repetition: eliciting synchronized English responses from the student cohort; having students recognize and practice a target language item; and pursuing particular answers. These findings provide procedural accounts of practical routines through which language teachers organize children's participation and guide them through the English lessons.” (Roh & Lee 2018) According to Roh and Lee, a classroom is a place for young children to learn how to socialize, adapt appropriate behaviors  and learn how to have discourse. 

 

Through Roh and Lee’s research they have seen varying results for repirition for SLA (second language acquisition) some suppose that repetition is just part of “mechanical drills” and are not effective for language acquisition. While others have found repetition  to be an important “condition for target language compressions and performance.”(Roh & Lee 2018)

In order to test their theory they used a native english speaker from the philippines with experience teaching english to elementary children in Korea. She taught 15-20 students that were five or six years old and beginner english speakers. She taught them lessons about storytelling and used tangible objects to prompt students. 

 

In result “While these repetitions fulfilled routine pedagogical roles such as initiating questions and responding to student answers, these roles appeared to be more varied and persistent than prior research had indicated. The present study demonstrates how the pedagogical roles in repetition are tailored for young Korean children with limited language proficiency.” (Roh & Lee 2018) 

 

 

Price, J. (2019, September ). Personal Interview.

In what ways do you use repetition while teaching literacy?

We read a lot of the same books over and over and poems too. Whatever the teaching goal, is, I tell them what it is initially and then I  say it throughout the lesson. If we are learning something new, I will read the first line then have them repeat. 

What strategies do you use to support english learners in your classroom?

I try to bring in as much realia  as possible. Whenever I am making an anchor chart I draw pictures that match the words, and even with our songs and poems I always try to add symbols and pictures to help them remember. Repetition, hand motions. Glad strategies -guided language acquisition design.  It’s helpful from language learners and all students. I really recommend taking the training if you have the chance to. 

What does group work and collaboration look like in your kindergarten classroom?

We do group work and collaboration for project work. Projects we've done in the past, we break down into different groups based on interest are content or topic or skill level.  I model collaboration or sometimes I directly tell them instructions. Other times I ask kids for input to build an anchor chart and make guidelines for the activity. I like to have the kids practice with something low steaks like a puzzle. And sometimes I like assigning jobs within the group, that seems to help with conflict. 


 

References

Biocarles-Rydeen, R. (2019, September ). Personal Interview.

Cavanaugh, D., Clemence, M., Teale, K., Rule, J., & Montgomery, M. (2017). Kindergarten Scores, Storytelling, Executive Function, and Motivation Improved through Literacy-Rich Guided Play. Early Childhood Education Journal, 45 (6), 831-843.

Cooper, S. (2019, September ). Personal Interview.

Ferlazzo, L. (2011, May 8). “Involvement or Engagement - Schools. Families, Communities.” Educational Leadership, vol. 68, no. pp. 10–14.

Firlik, R. (2003). Early Years Summit: Preschool-Kindergarten Collaboration Makes a Difference. YC Young Children, 58(1), 73-78

Kohn, A. (2001, September). Five Reasons to Stop Saying “Good Job!”. Young Children. 

Lance, S. (2019, October ). Personal Interview.

Miedema, S. (2019, October ). Personal Interview.

Price, J. (2019, October ). Personal Interview.

Pyle, A., Prioletta, J., & Poliszczuk, D. (2018). The Play-Literacy Interface in Full-day Kindergarten Classrooms. Early Childhood Education Journal, 46(1), 117-127.

 

Roh, T., & Lee, Y. (2018). Teacher repetition as an instructional resource for classroom interaction: Three pedagogical actions in kindergartens in an EFL context. System, 74, 121-137.

 

Schneider, A., & Kipp, K. (2015). Professional growth through collaboration between kindergarten and elementary school teachers. Teaching and Teacher Education, 52, 37-46.