Reflecting on Lessons

January 4, 2013  |  Teaching
Pen(cil) to paper all day!

Working it out.

I work with some really brilliant teachers uptown at Global Scholars Academy.

We’ve been studying effective teaching together. In that work we have tried to be the kinds of colleagues who are publicly reflective. Yesterday we thought of a few questions that we could use as a protocol to guide that reflection. Keeping in mind that one cannot really get the full measure of a teacher from a short meeting or classroom visit, we’ve used our common meeting time and preps to look at lesson plans and student work together.

Additionally, when we critique each other as peers, it has been valuable to give feedback that is not just based on an isolated encounter but on work, growth, and development done over time. This has helped us to see our teaching as a developing craft, not a product.

Here are some questions that we hope you can use as you lesson plan and reflect in your own school. Nothing too flashy here, just some solid, productive introspection.

When preparing a lesson:

  • What kind of critical thinking is built into this lesson? Where can I expect to see it? — in my connection? Teach? Demonstration? Active engagement? Independent/partner/group work?
  • What data led to this lesson? Why was this what you chose to teach?
  • What specific skill are you teaching?
  • How are you going to model this skill for students?
  • What will you do for struggling students or for kids who have already mastered this?

Here are some things that you can ask yourself after a lesson:

  • How did it go? If you could improve something, what would you improve? Why?
  • How will you use the data from this lesson to influence the teaching for tomorrow?


1 Comment


  1. We couldn’t do it without you Corn-Dawg!

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