A Desert Oasis:
Unit Description before LInC
The goals and objectives of this course were met through a series of scenario/simulation activities conducted in the university classroom setting in which preservice teachers developed instructional programs for reading and literacy development based on the New Mexico state standards with benchmarks for language arts and local competencies for language arts, science, and social studies from the Gadsden Independent School District. The course was facilitated using Web-CT (Course Tools), and a number of technological tools were integrated into the course curriculum, such as Inspiration, Hyperstudio, and Powerpoint. Students maintained electronic portfolios, and CD-ROM with students' work were distributed to students at the end of each semester.
Grade Level: Preservice Teachers in their final year of coursework (juniors, seniors, & graduate students)
Subject: Reading/Literacy Curriculum & Pedagogy
Outcome 1: The preservice teacher critically reviews, selects, and adapts materials, resources, and technologies for age appropriateness, developmental level, cultural and linguistic background, exceptionalities, biases and stereotypes, connect appropriateness in regard to language arts curriculum, reading level, and relevance to students.
Outcome 2: The preservice teacher understand learning theory, subject matter, and curriculum development and uses this knowledge in planning to meet curriculum goals.
Outcome 3: The preservice teacher becomes familiar with students' families, cultures, and communities, and plans related learning activities.
Outcome 4: The preservice teacher integrates a variety of technologies into planned activities, including software, applications, and other learning tools.
Outcome 5: The preservice teacher collaborates with specialists, support personnel, parents, and administrators in an interdisciplinary manner for the success of the individual student.
Outcome 6: The preservice teacher understands children's developmental stages in learning to speak, read write, and listen effectively and models effective reading, writing, speaking, and listening, among other literacy skills, such as critical thinking and visual literacy.
Outcome 7: The preservice teacher provides opportunities for students to understand, consider, respond to, and discuss spoken and written materials.
Outcome 8: The preservice teacher is familiar with and used a variety of reading materials, including children's literature, non-fiction, stories, poems, biographies, and texts from various subject areas.
Outcome 9: The preservice teacher helps students to become aware of different purposes for reading and situations for reading, and to think critically about and respond to what they have read.
Outcome 10: The preservice teacher provides a variety of opportunities for students to demonstrate reading comprehension.
Student Task: Activities and tasks were limited to the role and responsibilities of the preservice teacher in the future. There was no opportunity for elementary education majors to partner with a class or group of grade school students.
Teacher Role: The course instructor gave lectures and workshops, assigned application questions and jigsaw activities from the textbook, facilitated the development of lesson plans, and compiled the CD-ROM at the end of semester.
Grouping: Students primarily worked individually and in small groups to complete course requirements.
Hook: The hook for the course was limited to the application of theory to practice in the future. Students were guided through scenarios in which they were required to imagine themselves in the place of the classroom teacher. To these ends, students were taught methods of curriculum development that were being used in the Gadsden Independent School District.
Student-Directed Learning: Students had few opportunities to make choices in their learning. The only option available to students was the topic for the culminating lesson plan development using backward planning, the curriculum development method implemented in the Gadsden Independent School District.
Use of Technology: Technology was used extensively in this course, and students used word processing programs, Inspiration, Hyperstudio, and PowerPoint in their projects, activities, and exams. The Internet was used in the context of locating viable online resources for use in the elementary classroom.
Assessment: Students were assessed on the basis of a journal kept throughout the semester, tests and exams, presentations of textbook chapters and lesson plans, and culminating project rubrics.
Created for the Fermilab LInC program sponsored by Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory Education Office and Friends of Fermilab, and funded by United States Department of Energy, Illinois State Board of Education, North Central Regional Technology in Education Consortium which is operated by North Central Regional Educational Laboratory (NCREL), and the National Science Foundation.
Author(s): Ellen Treadway (firstname.lastname@example.org)