EDUCATION 101 Notes on Visiting Your Partner’s School Observation III -

Observation III - Notes on Visiting Your Partner’s School
You have completed two observations at your school. In a sense, you are developing as an
expert on your school site. It is time to take your sharpened observational skills to your partner’s
school for a day of listening, noticing, and attending to the school site in which your partner is
becoming a local expert.
What is due on Tuesday, December 4:
Please submit a detailed set of double-entry notes indicating what you saw and heard, as well
as your reflections, impressions, and questions about what you saw and heard. Remember,
these are notes, not a polished paper. (For your final ED 101 assignment - due on December 20
- you will be using these Observation III notes to work on a collaborative paper with your
partner.) In addition, you need to submit the schedule of your visit with your notes (see below).
Things you should consider and/or look at:
Observe at least two classes - perhaps different courses, but at least of different levels
(e.g., “college prep” and “honors”) - and use the “triangle” as your lens for thinking about
what’s happening.
Visit the common spaces - the cafeteria, the library, the lobby, the hallways.
Talk with students.
Talk with teachers.
You should meet (even briefly) with an administrator - department head, assistant
principal, principal - your host should set this up for you.
Take a tour of the school … the whole school.
Every school is proud of something, find out what those things are.
Visit preparation:
Communicate with your partner as soon as possible to determine when each of you can
visit the other’s site. (Note: you are not swapping for the day; you are visiting the other’s
school and should be present when your partner visits your school.)
Share with your mentor/co-op that your partner will be coming to visit and elicit
suggestions for what might be included in a tour of the building and what class(es) you
might visit.
Gather any materials about the school that your visitor might find helpful: the schedule,
handbook, website information, etc. Look over the website of the school and district you
will be visiting to get the big picture of the schools in the community.
The host should prepare a schedule for the day - outlining what the practice partner will
see during the visit. Please submit this schedule with your notes on December 4.
Interns will need to make arrangements with their mentors for coverage when they go on
their visits.
Moving forward to the Collaborative Paper:
In his October 9 talk here at Tufts, Kevin Kumashiro ended his talk in response to the
question ”What can we do?” He outlined four points of advice for teachers-to-be:
1 Find your professional community - think about communities beyond your neighborhood,
city, state.
2 While schooling necessarily puts content and academics at the core, teaching is about
far more than just content and academics.
3 Teaching is being an engaged citizen - it can be about movement forming.
4 Teaching for social justice is all about working within the context that we have – finding
creative ways to work with what we have.
Your final assignment, due on December 20, will be a collaborative paper in which you explore
Kumashiro’s four pieces of advice and their application to your developing stance on what it
means to be a teacher and on what it means to be part of the teaching profession. You will be
asked to collaborate with your partner, discussing not only your school visits but also your prior
work in ED 101 and how it frames your thinking about the visits.
Consider the reading and thinking that you have done on the Professional Standards
and the dialogue that you’ve engaged in on Trunk.
Consider the reading and thinking that you have done for this class - Hawkins,
McDonald, Shor, Cushman, Kohn, Wormelli, etc.
Additionally, carefully read back over the first two observation assignments that you’ve