On completion of our initial visit, my diagnostic assessment allowed me to realise that the children were unsure of how sound travels, as out of three children only Child A included in her drawing, ‘vibration lines’. Using just an empty jar and a spoon, I had each child take turns at hitting the side of the jar and then getting them to describe what they heard, where the sound was coming from and where it was going to. After some discussion we added some water and tapped the side of the jar again. Once again, I asked them to describe what we’ve heard and if it was different? They used answers such as, “The sound stays in the jar”, and “The noise is coming from the spoon”, but they were able to suggest that the sound will change if the jar was larger, thinner, or if the water level was different.
Skemp (2015) suggests that constructivist strategies value students’ ideas and use them as a focus for many activities, student interest and engagement sometimes naturally follow. Therefore, I made the decision to focus on these concepts in my planning because I was hoping to gain and maintain the children’s interest throughout my lesson. I achieved this in my lesson by asking lots of open-ended questions first, and by choosing hands on activities that required the participation of all three children.
Reflections on teaching decisions
My lesson was structured around building on what they already knew. Based on the results of my first visit, I was able to see that at…