Ashley Maeshiro (Saturday, 31 October 2020 03:35)
At Mililani-Ike this week, I taught my first tiri-tiri unit lesson to all grade 2 classes. We had a few technical difficulties with some of the classes. During my first class on Wednesday, my
connection went bad and everyone was frozen during my Dalcroze activity to prepare tiri-tiri. The connection got so bad that I got removed from the meeting, but when I got back in, the connection was
better. We also had a bit of a connection issue with the first class today because the teacher couldn't open the meeting, then it took almost five minutes for everyone’s audio to connect. For those
two classes, we didn’t get to the last activity, Tideo, so I told the students to make sure that they watch the video on the Music Bitmoji Classroom. I also asked the teachers for those classes to
send their students a Google Form I made asking the students if they watched the video or not. We technically can’t make the students do anything because music is not graded this semester, so it can
make it difficult to get all the students to watch the asynchronous videos or complete their homework worksheets.
My first class on Thursday was the roughest class for me. About a fourth of the students in that class are special learners, so it was difficult for me to manage all of them. I could somewhat tell
which students were special learners because they were wearing masks and I could see that they were in a classroom from their backgrounds. While I was teaching, I wasn’t sure how to address the
special learners because I wasn’t sure of their needs. It was hard for me to tell if the students were struggling because they needed help focusing, or they needed help understanding what was going
on. After the class, I told Lauren that I felt like I didn’t know what to do to help everyone, and that made my confidence start dropping, and when I felt like my confidence was dropping, I was
pulling the energy of the class down. It was interesting to me that Lauren said from her perspective, she didn’t notice a confidence change from me, and she said the lesson was fine. It made me
realize that things might seem worse in my head, but from the viewers perspective it’s not as noticeable. I think that this likely happens to me a lot when I’m teaching. I think that sometimes I feel
like something isn’t going well when it’s actually fine, but once I start feeling that way, my confidence starts dropping and that’s when things might actually start getting rough.
My focus class was the second class on Thursday. After the earlier class, I was a bit worried about how my focus class was going to go. The students in my focus class were more willing to participate
and volunteer during the activities, so it really helped the activities move along well. I was watching my three focus students more closely during this class because I was going to have them do some
extra activities with their pre-assessment after class. After class, I had my three focus students stay for a few minutes, and I pulled up their pre-assessment worksheets. I had my high achieving
focus student perform the patterns they created in their pre-assessment for me. They performed them easily, so that’s all I had them do. Then I had my middle achieving focus student perform their
patterns, and they did so easily as well. They left the second page of the pre-assessment blank, so I showed them how to do it by talking them through the first pattern they had to label. They
understood quickly so I told them to complete the assignment and resubmit it. My lower achieving focus student completed most of the patterns on the first page incorrectly and they left the second
page blank. After talking through the patterns with the student, they were able to make corrections. They were a bit reluctant to perform the patterns, so I convinced them to at least perform the
first two. They performed incorrectly at first, but after I explained their errors, they fixed it. For the second page, the student said they didn’t know what to do, so I explained to them. He then
understood what to do, but he wanted to complete it together. He did all the work without any issues for the most part, he just told me the answers and I typed it in. For both my middle and lower
achieving students, (and all the students in general) I posted comments on their worksheets explaining how to do the second page if they left it blank, and pointed out errors to check. Although there
are instructions on the worksheets, we go over how to do the homework in class, and we create a “how to complete worksheet” video, many students still express that they don’t know what to do for
assignments. I think this is another challenge with distance learning because it’s harder to give individual instruction due to time and scheduling.
Ashley Maeshiro (Saturday, 31 October 2020 03:34)
At Highlands this week, I taught the beginning band classes about accidentals and time signatures. On Monday, Clement walked me through how to get the students started with their mouthpiece kits, and
on Tuesday I took over. On Monday the beginning band class is a mix of woodwind, brass, and percussion students, but on Tuesday the class is only brass and percussion. I taught them the basics of how
to form their embouchure, and how to buzz. Besides distance learning being an issue, what I found most challenging was trying to model forming the embouchure and free buzzing properly. For the
percussion students, Clement had me go over single stroke, diddle, and flam with them. For the percussion, the distance learning was particularly challenging because it was difficult to see everyones
entire body. A lot of students were struggling to hold their sticks properly, but in order for me to see their hands, they had to move out of playing position. Also, many of the students did not have
a table or something at waist height to put their drum pads on, so it also made it difficult for them to play properly.
In the symphonic band class, Clement had me go over a few exercises in the Accent on Achievement book with students using their “4 Step Process.” The “4 Step Process” at Highlands when looking at a
piece of music is to (1) write in the counting, (2) count and clap, (3) hiss and finger, and (4) play. It seemed like these exercises were review for some students but not for others, because when I
told them to turn their camera off when they were finished writing down the counting, almost half the class turned their cameras off immediately. I asked a few students to tell me what they wrote for
their counting for a few measures of each exercise. The students gave me the correct counting for the most part, some just had minor errors. When we got to step four (play), we played each exercise
together as a class (muted), then I had a few students just play four meaures alone, unmuted. I played with one student because they were a bit scared to play by themselves, but the others played
alone. All of them struggled, some more than others. After class, Clement told me that I should work on giving the students more specific feedback. I think that when the students were struggling a
lot on something that was review for them, I wasn’t sure how to help them. I think most of what I said after each student played was just encouraging words to keep trying/working on it, but I don’t
think I gave them specific ways for them to work on their weak points.