Beginning proficiency level: 11th Grade Chemistry

This observation occurs during the fourth month of school.

Support materials:
Excerpt from Observation Form
Excerpt of Conversation with Evaluator
Conversation with Students

Overall rating & analysis

Overall rating:Two BP strands equal an overall BP rating.

Beginning

Advanced

Exemplary

Strand 1: The teacher’s effectiveness in selecting “I can” strategies and messages that will compel students.

Effectively uses the same teacher-centered strategies in all situations to convey generic messages that students can achieve by working hard

Effectively uses student-centered strategies (based on an understanding of students and depending on the situation) to reach a range of students to convey that students can achieve by working hard

Effectively considers individual students and situations when choosing strategies and messages that convey that students can achieve by working hard

Strand 2: The frequency of “I can” strategies and the degree to which they are integrated into the classroom.

Conveys messages and implements strategies occasionally and in isolation

Regularly conveys messages and employs a series of integrated classroom strategies

Monitors individual students’ “I can” investment levels, effectively conveys messages and employs strategies as often as necessary, enables students to empower one another, and initiates effective efforts to shape the larger school context


Analysis: Why did the teacher receive these ratings?

Rating: BPStrand 1: The teacher’s effectiveness in selecting “I can” strategies and messages that will compel students.

Why BP?

The teacher "effectively uses teacher-centered strategies in all situations to convey generic messages that students can achieve by working hard."

The teacher uses two strategies to convey that hard work will lead to academic success: the "Hardest Working Scientist of the Month" bulletin board where she highlights a student who has exerted a lot of effort and connects his/her work to the improvement s/he has made; and the "Hardest Working Class" bulletin board where she highlights the class that has shown the most improvement. Both strategies are "teacher-centered" because the teacher’s role in the strategies overshadows students’ minimal and/or superficial involvement.

The student interviews reveal that the generic messages are effective because students find them important, relevant, and compelling and can state what their persistence means in a general way (e.g., in response to the evaluator's questions about the "Hardest Working Scientist of the Month" bulletin board, students said, "It's cool because she doesn't pick the same old kids who get all the awards all the time. It's not just the straight A students up there. She picks the ones who are really trying and really working. That's why I like it." and "It shows us that you really can do better if you try. I mean, we know that already. It's obvious. But it's a good reminder I think. And I like that, like this month for example, she picked someone who still only got a C, but last unit he got a D and this was the first unit he passed, so it was really exciting for him and we were all really proud of him.").

Why not AP?

The strategies are not "student-centered" because they are facilitated by the teacher and include no student participation.

Rating: BPStrand 2: The frequency of “I can” strategies and the degree to which they are integrated into the classroom.

Why BP?

The teacher "conveys messages and implements strategies occasionally and in isolation." She implements her two strategies at formal occasions. She highlights the "Hardest Working Scientist of the Month" once a month and chooses the "Hardest Working Class" at the end of each unit.

Why not AP?

The teacher does not employ "a series of integrated classroom strategies." The strategies she uses occur only at formal occasions and are not integrated into other classroom structures.