Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus
SCHOOL OF EDUCATION
ED102: Field Experience in Elementary Education
Spring Semester, 2007
Instructors: Prof. Mary Beth Johnson
Dr. Glenda Y. Hernandez
Your job during any field experience is to observe and explore. You will be observing
classrooms and teachers, students and environments. You will be exploring many
facets of becoming a teacher. Concentrate on constructing pertinent questions based
on your observations. Part of being a skilled observer is learning to look introspectively
at you. Reflect on your own experiences: what you have seen, heard, and sensed.
Allow yourself to grow and stretch, even when it’s not comfortable.
This course requires a 45-hour field experience component. The assignments are
specifically designed to facilitate that field experience and help you become a more
skilled observer. During your observations, you should ask yourself:
Why do I want to become a teacher?
What will my life be like as a teacher?
What kind of school setting would I like to teach in?
How can I best explore and grow in the profession of teaching?
What responsibilities will I need to fulfill to realize my dream of entering the
How can I make sure that I do what is best for me?
Learning how to observe well is an exciting experience. It is different from just looking
at what is in front of you. It can offer you richer appreciation of everyday events.
Developing skills as an observer helps you become a more creative and imaginative
person. As you begin your journey, try to envision your future. Four to five years from
now you could be a college graduate, a certified teacher, and have your own classroom
for the first time! Begin now to plan your future success!
. Start taking notes every day that you are in the school. Take notes about the
neighborhood, the school building, bulletin boards in the hallways and offices,
anything that is of interest to you. Look for cultural information about the school: its
mission statement, photos of students and/or teachers, how friendly you think the
people are, the maintenance of the building, indoors and outdoors.
It is your responsibility to act as a professional during your field experience.
Confidentiality is extremely important. Do not identify any children or students in your
written logs. Use gender and letters, such as Girl or Boy A, B, or C, to identify them.
Remember that the individuals in our public schools are very busy and must have their
students as their first responsibility. Be patient and sensitive. View this experience as a
beginning, as a way for you to form your own ideas and values about how you want to
Imagine that you are interviewing for a teaching position at this school.
What would you look for in a prospective school?
Does it appear to have good leadership from the principal and staff?
Would you want to come there every day to work, why or why not?
Try to soak in as much as possible by keeping all of your senses intensely focused on
observing what you can see, hear and sense around you. In your written logs, the art of
observing is accompanied by the challenges of writing and reflecting.
During your initial field experience days, you should focus on careful observations.
Remember, you are there to observe and learn from the teacher and the children. You
should not be left in charge of a group of children at this point of your college career.
Legally, you do not want that responsibility for children’s safety. There are very strict
rules about who is responsible for children while they are at school and you are not
covered by any licensed, certificate, training or permission. Montgomery College is
liable for you. Even if the teacher you are observing is having an emergency and ask
you to watch his or her class for just a few minutes, you cannot say yes. You must
remain firm in order to protect the children, Montgomery College, and yourself. Call
or buzz the main office for assistance immediately.
As you progress month to month in your field experience, you and your mentor teacher
whom you are observing and assisting may decide that you can work individually with
some children or with a small group. Together you can choose what level of
involvement is appropriate for you and that you feel comfortable with in the school.
Although clerical work, such as copying is a part of the teacher’s work day, this is not
the intent of your assignment. If it becomes apparent that there is some confusion as to
your role as an observer, please contact your Montgomery College Supervisor
immediately. The assignments, as specified in the syllabus, should be your priority as
they constitute the major focus of your grade in this course. Your grade will be
composed of your written assignments, your fulfillment of the 45-hour requirement,
your attendance at the required seminars and the evaluation of the Host Teacher and
your Field Experience Supervisor.
ASSIGNMENTS FOR ED 102
All assignments must be completed in a professional manner and meet the standards of
college level work. This means word-processing, using 10-12 point font, 1 to 2 inch
margins, with approximately 250 words per page, proof read, and spell checked.
Points will be deducted for any deviations from these standards.
All Observations must include the following heading:
Assignment Number and Title
MC Supervisor’s Name
** Reflections must be turned in on time to your field experience supervisor at the
designated location. No exceptions will be made unless you have made arrangements
with your supervisor PRIOR to the due date of your assignments.
Montgomery County Public School Site Visit
ED 102 students must attend the designated MCPS site for a minimum four-five hours
each week for a total of 10 weeks. Each student will be given a packet of information
which will include a sign-in sheet to document the hours of attendance. The sign-in
sheet must be initialed each time by the classroom teacher. Upon the completion of the
course, your hours of attendance must equal 45 hours. You will not pass this course
without the completion of 45 hours.
You are expected to attend the assigned Montgomery College Public School (MCPS) site
for four-five hours each week for a total of 45 hours. You may wish to record your
observations after each visit to assist you in completing the written assignment that will
be submitted during the midterm seminar. The first written assignment is due at the
Midterm seminar. Please come prepared to discuss your assignment.
To receive a passing grade for the Field Experience, Students must complete 45 hours of
observation and submit the four (4) observations, and attend seminars. Students must
complete all required assignments and submit the Field Experience Placement
Notebook, and receive the approval of the Field Experience Supervisor. All elements of
the notebook must meet their specified criteria, and contents must conform to the
guidelines as identified by the School of Education.
270-300 points A (90-100%)
240-269 points B (80-89%)
210-239 points C (70-79%)
180-209 points D (60-69%)
Evaluation 40 points
Orientation 40 points
Midterm Seminar 50 points
Final Seminar 50 points
Reflective Observations (four entries) 120 points
Total 300 points
Due on Midterm Seminar Date: February 27th, 2007
**(You MUST attend the midterm seminar on this date. No exceptions.)
These observations must be completed and submitted during the midterm seminar to
facilitate your learning. The first two assignments are due at the mandatory midterm
seminar. Plan accordingly.
Due Dates for Reflective Observations:
Observations will be due at the midterm seminar and the final seminar. Observations
are an extremely important part of your field experience. You will be responsible for
completing two written observations over the course of the semester. You will observe
the class and/or the teacher, detailing the process of lessons, the behavior of students
individually and in groups, or describing particular students and behaviors. These
observations are each focused on different and specific aspects of teaching. You will
collect data from observing and discussions with your supervising teacher. You will
analyze and reflect on this information as you write.
The first two assignments will focus on School Climate and Student Interaction and
Diversity. Please review the assigned questions and the rubric that will be used to
grade this assignment. During each visit you may wish to focus your attention on a set
of specific questions. School climate should be your initial focus. This assignment is
due at the midterm seminar. Your supervisor will contact you to confirm your
attendance for the midterm seminar. Remember it is your responsibility to follow up
and attend the seminars.
These observations must be completed and submitted during the midterm seminar to
facilitate your learning. Each written observation is worth 30 points for a total of 120
points, a large portion of your grade
1. School Climate (30 points)
A general observation of the school building and classroom is a great way to begin your
observations. Choose two or three of the elements below to write a one and one-half to
two page reflection.
Take time to observe and reflect on the overall climate and culture of the school.
Is the environment inviting and exciting? What kind of feeling does the area
bring to mind?
What components do you think are most influential in affecting a positive
How does classroom organization and routines affect the school climate?
Is the teacher’s philosophy apparent from the classroom organization and
Reflect on your observation and describe the type of school and classroom
climate you would like to provide for students in your future classroom.
2. Student Interactions and Diversity (30 points)
The students and how they interact with one another can have an important impact on
the classroom. You will be observing and collecting data on the students to determine
how the student population affects the instruction. Choose two or three of the elements
below to write a one and one-half to two page reflection.
Describe the kinds of interactions the students have with each other. What do
they talk about? To whom do they talk?
Are students that belong to a minority group treated differently or does the
teacher involve all students effectively?
Do any of these students appear to participate in the classroom to a greater or
lesser degree? Are there certain kinds of activities in which minority students
are more or less engaged?
Describe the ways you will ensure that all students are engaged and
participating regardless of their ethnic background or their achievement level.
What is your overall feeling about the sense of community in the classroom?
Due on Final Seminar Date: May 1st, 2007
**(You MUST attend the final seminar on this date. No exceptions.)
The next set of observations must be completed and submitted during the final seminar
thus bringing closure to the field experience. The complete written observations are
worth 30 points each, 60points total. This assignment is due during the mandatory
final seminar. Plan accordingly. Your grade will be affected if these are not turned in
3. Student Characteristics and Learning Needs (30 points)
Getting to know the students and their individual needs is of vital importance. For this
section you will be observing and discussing the students and their needs with your
supervising teacher. Choose two or three of the elements below to write a one and one-
half to two page reflection.
What methods does the teacher use to address the individual needs of students
with various learning problems in the classroom?
How did the teacher engage the students in the lesson or activity?
What have your observations told you about how to best teach students with
different learning styles?
How is this classroom setting different from the classroom and classmates when
you were in school? How is it the same?
Picture your classroom in the future, what methods and strategies will you use
to be sure that all student individual needs are met?
4. Effective Teaching Methods and Behavior Management Strategies (30 points)
You will begin focusing in on the teaching methods by watching the teacher and the
reaction of the students. As you watch, think about what you would need to do if you
were going to be teaching this same lesson to your class during the next week. Choose
two or three of the elements below to write a one and one-half to two page reflection.
What is the point of the lesson? Does it match the stated purpose? Is there an
objective stated or written on the board? Are the students able to accomplish
How responsive is the teacher to the moods or interests of the students? How
did the teacher engage the students?
What factors facilitated the lesson and what factors constrained the progress?
Does the seating arrangement affect the behavior of the students?
When you think about your classroom in the future, what methods and
strategies would you like to use?
Appointments: It is your responsibility to maintain appointments for your field
experience hours with the teacher(s) and principal at your school. You must keep a
record of all of your field experience hours, including dates, times and classrooms. You
must sign in on the log provided at your school office every week. Most students will go
to their school four-five (4-5) hours per week. Try to remain open to observing
different kinds of teaching styles, room arrangements, and learning materials. You can
learn from any and all of them. As a professional, you are responsible for making
appointments, keeping those appointments, arriving and departing on time, and
communicating and behaving appropriately during your visits. Your total hours must
equal 45, without exception.