The particular aspect of the lesson that I wanted to focus on was the debrief, since this has been – for me – the most challenging part of the 3-part lesson format.
What Dale does during the debrief is have 3-4 students share their responses. He tries to select these while he is walking around observing students working on the problem each day.
He begins by inviting a student up to share. (The work is placed on the document camera, and a photo is taken and inserted onto the prepared problem slide.) Once the student has shared her solution, he thanks her and invites the rest of the class to give her a round of applause.
Following the sharing of a student solution/response, Dale debriefs and annotates the response, then groups the photo and annotations, and moves them to the side so that the next student can come up and present. Today, four different student responses were shared and annotated. The majority of the students were engaged during this phase of the lesson, though a few seemed distracted (far fewer, though, I noted, than in my classroom!)
It was particularly useful to be there with another colleague, who had come from another school to check out our Smart Boards, and to observe our morning Literacy block. As we both sat in on Dale’s math lesson, we were able to share our thinking as things unfolded in the classroom.
The debrief was long, like mine.
At the end, Dale summarized what they had been working on that day, and then asked the students a guiding question which encouraged them to consider what they had learned that period. Students chatted briefly with an elbow partner, and then shared their ideas with the class, while Dale recorded them under the “what we learned” heading on the Smart Board.
It was reassuring to see that Dale encounters the same frustrations regarding time in his classroom as I do in mine, that is, there is never enough! (He ended up doing the “practice” part of the lesson later in the afternoon today, after lunch.)
Although I came to watch my colleague teach math, I also picked up a few other practical classroom management tricks, which I have shared on my other blog, here.