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  • February 14No School Friday (Staff Development)

Teacher Walk-Throughs: Unveiling the Not-so Terrible Truth

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Have you ever had a group of teachers or administrators walk into your classroom unannounced? Did it feel as though they were peering over your shoulder, watching your every move?

Well, the good news is that teacher walkthroughs aren’t nearly as daunting as they seem.
Almost every teacher in the building has been visited by a group of teachers and administrators, often when the teacher isn’t giving a particular lesson and students are doing work on their own. This change of pace from the normal learning environment is often intimidating to kids. In reality, however, the walk-throughs are benefiting students.

The purpose of teacher walkthroughs is to see how engaged students are within the classroom. They observe the student’s behavior and work, and then ask questions about the topic they are learning.
Through all of these questions, they are taking notes about how engaged the students seem to be. They record notes about the kinds of task the students are engaged in and talk about ways to make learning more active and engaging. The district is partnering with John Antonetti, a teacher and author who wrote “17,000 Classroom Visits Can’t Be Wrong.” He writes, “Up until about a decade ago, the word engagement was used in a binary way to describe student behavior – students were either working or they were not.” Today, that mindset is being changed to adhere to the needs of students.

Teachers try to figure out the engagement level of students in order to make their lessons more exciting and relateable to sixth, seventh, and eighth graders. If students seem engaged, they will incorporate more of the lessons that seem to excite students into the curriculum. If students don’t seem to be that intrigued in the lesson, they will adapt the curriculum in order to make students more engaged within their learning environment. Educators who observe the classroom strongly believe that just because students are “on-task” with the lesson doesn’t mean that they are actually learning from it and interested in the topic. The notes that they take will later to be used to incorporate lessons into the curriculum that genuinely fascinate students.

Editorial”

— The Staff

When teachers and administrators enter the classroom, it’s important to remain calm and not be nervous. Remember that they are not judging your skills or abilities; they are simply trying to figure out what you enjoy to learn about as a student and what needs to be done in order to improve the curriculum. In the end, teacher walkthroughs benefit everyone; teachers get to observe a classroom environment, and students will be taught more interesting lessons in the future.

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2 Comments

2 Responses to “Teacher Walk-Throughs: Unveiling the Not-so Terrible Truth”

  1. Alexandra Scully on February 15th, 2018 9:31 am

    I personally find these walk in’s stressful because I know they’ll be asking questions. This article does show that this is for the benefit for our education, but it doesn’t make it much better for students who don’t really like talking or confrontation in general.

    [Reply]

  2. Annabelle on February 15th, 2018 9:56 am

    I have always been stressed out about these because I thought that the teachers were judging my personal abilities. Thank you for clarifying it for me and others who feel similarly.

    [Reply]

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Teacher Walk-Throughs: Unveiling the Not-so Terrible Truth