The following is a reflection on Lesson 4 of the RD Program that I have started in a Grade 4 classroom at my school. Read more about the program here, as well as my reflections on each lesson:
The purpose of Lesson 4 is to build hope for students and encourage them to consider different career possibilities. It is meant to help them realize that everyone has the opportunity for success, regardless of their learning profile, and to encourage them to continue developing their strengths and challenges, based on their career interests.
I planned on the lesson going as follows:
- Briefly discuss careers and how they relate to the multiple intelligences.
- Brain storm different roles (adult jobs) within the school community and what type of “smarts” they require.
- Have a small group of students go around the school taking pictures of the adults identified in step 2, while the rest of the class works on step 4.
- Have groups of students sort images of different careers (prepared ahead of time) into the multiple intelligences categories. Have the students add these to a “smarts” web.
- Have the students complete the reflection questions in their journal.
Step 1 of the lesson went fairly quickly. I told the students that in this lesson we would be discussing careers, and I asked them if they could think of why we might have an entire lesson dedicated to careers, while learning about the smarts. They were able to make the connection right away. They recognized that considering our smarts, as well as our challenges, could help in planning for future career possibilities.
Next, while reviewing the characteristics of each “smart,” I also had them try and identify adults in the school who demonstrate strength in the various “smarts.” They made the obvious connections, like our music teacher as having Music Smarts, and our gym teachers as having Body Smarts, but they did great at the other “smarts” as well.
Once we had identified an adult in the building for each of the “smarts,” I sent a small group out with the EA to walk around the school and take pictures of each of these adults. You may remember from a prior post that this class is a busy group. This task was intentionally planned in order to provide the movers a movement break, while still giving them a purposeful task. They welcomed the opportunity!
In order to change the pace for the other students as well, I brought them all to the carpet to sit in a circle, and distributed various props (see picture below).
I instructed the students to consider a career that their prop could represent, and then to think of the “smarts” that might be required for that job. We went around the circle and discussed each career and the corresponding “smarts.” This activity went really well, and was just the right length of time. They were just starting to fidget a bit on the carpet.
At this point, I split the class into five small groups. Each group was given a brief description of each of the nine “smarts,” as well as an envelope with nine cut out images that represented different careers. I instructed them to select one image per smart, in order to have a career that represented each of the “smarts.” Each group received different images. They wrote the name of each smart on the back of the image.
Next I was hoping to have each group glue their images in the right category on a colour-coded web. Because of time constraints, I decided to get them started on the journal reflection instead. While most students worked in their journals, I had a small group of students help with finishing the web. Later the photos of staff members were added to the web as well! Have a look below!
This concluded Lesson 4. I was really happy with how it went. The students seemed interested and they all contributed actively to each activity. While I was busy with the small group gluing the images on the web, many students had questions regarding the journal reflection. The classroom teacher took this opportunity to encourage these students to check the community brain, in order to find peers that might be able to help them. This was music to my ears! I am happy to see that the students and the classroom teachers are jumping on board with the program!
Read more about this program here.
Katz, J. (2012). Teaching to Diversity: The Three-Block Model of Universal Design for Learning. Winnipeg: Portage & Main Press.