Creating an Effective Learning Environment in the Classroom

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As a professional teacher in the state of California, there are many expectations that are to be followed and kept up to par. These expectations are called Teacher Performance Expectations (TPE's). One very important TPE is creating an effective and efficient learning environment. This is very important for everyone in the teaching profession to create and maintain this TPE in their classroom.

I am observing Mrs. S in a 4th-5th combo class at an elementary school in Denair. I observe science in the afternoon when the students come back from lunch and P.E., and I sometimes observe math in the morning's. The class consists of thirteen boys and seventeen girls. Four of Mrs. S's students are English Language Learners (ELL), who's predominate language is not English. The school's percentage of ELL learners is over twenty-five percent. One of her students, a fourth grader,—not an ELL student—is below reading level; one of her students, fifth grader,—also not an ELL learner—is at a ninth grade reading level.

Mrs. S has been teaching for over fifteen years and has a lot of experience in managing a classroom. While observing her I noticed many techniques she has learned to use over the years of teaching. When the students are doing group work, Mrs. S always circulates around the room to help with spelling big science words and to make sure the class is on task. Mrs. S expects a lot out of her students and they know to respect her at all times, or they will be sent to another classroom. When teaching new things to the students, she always brings back things they have already mastered and tries to tie in more than one subject. One neat technique she uses—in order to keep the class quite, since she has to teach two grades—is in word problems for math. What Mrs. S does is has the students read the problem then show with their hand what type of arithmetic they will use to solve the problem. If the student gets it right she nods, and if they get it wrong she...
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