EDUC 1000 Assignment 8. Developmentally

Denise Vernstrom
EDUC 1000 Field Experience
Andrea Coffey
March 26, 2013
Developmentally Appropriate Practices
The article, “Developmentally Appropriate Practices” from the North Central Regional
Educational Laboratory revealed several practical and useful tools that many educators are using
in classrooms today. I have observed all but one of them while completing some of my field
experience. I have not done any field experience in a reading lab or learning center at this time. I
would love to be able to see the dynamics of how these centers aid in the academic learning of
the students that use them. I will try to plan my next field experience so that I am able to see a
learning center up close so that I can glean the benefits and offering them to my students.
I have seen many of the developmentally appropriate practices mentioned while
experiencing service learning in an inclusive second grade classroom. I observed many active
learning experiences while using a variety of strategies to teach both math and reading in this
classroom. The students in this classroom were given dice and blocks to help them add and
subtract their math assignments. The students seemed to genuinely enjoy working with the
blocks and dice and were able to easily grasp the information in a fun way. In addition, the
students were taught how to make square cube charts to use on their papers to assist them when
the blocks were unavailable. It is a good tool to have when taking a test or perhaps when they are
at home alone. I wish that I could have been given the same fun tools to use when I learned how
to add and subtract.
EDUC 1000 Field Experience
Assignment 8: Developmentally Appropriate Practices
An integrated curriculum is one that connects diverse areas of study by cutting across
subject-matter lines and emphasizes unifying concepts. I have experienced this developmental
practice both as a student and during some of my field experiences. Some of the information that
I am required to master has been threaded throughout many of the classes that I have taken. The
duplication of the information has helped me to retain the concepts and connect the dots for
future references. One of the classrooms that I observed integrated the language, spelling,
geography, history, and art curriculum to emphasize cultural differences around the world. At the
end of the unit the entire school had an “Embracing World Cultures” festival on a Friday night.
Each classroom was given a specific country to study and represent. The students in each
classroom decorated their rooms with art projects and items that represented their country. They
studied the foods from that country and they made some of the food from that country to share
with everyone that visited their classrooms. The students in the classroom loved the activity and
learned not only a lot about their country but had the opportunity to learn about all of the other
countries represented by the other classrooms. It was a great way to thread information
throughout many different subject matters while teaching cultural differences and built
community while learning and having fun.
I have observed the balance between teacher-directed and child-directed activities in
several of my classrooms while acquiring some of my service learning experiences. I have found
that helping a child to learn how to problem solve themselves to complete an assignment is
sometimes more important than feeding them the right answers. We will not be able to help them
when tests are given and if they are unable to figure out how to problem solve to get the answer
themselves they may be unable to pass the test. I find that being told how to do something and
actually knowing how to do it myself are two different things. It is for a student as well.
EDUC 1000 Field Experience
Assignment 8: Developmentally Appropriate Practices