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Observation #1 Essay

1363 words - 6 pages

For the purpose of my first observation I chose to observe a Montessori classroom where I work in Longmont. The children are in a multi age environment at all times, ranging in age from two to six years old. Almost all the children regularly attend five days a week, with ten to fifteen children everyday. I work as a teachers assistant, since I am not yet qualified to be a Montessori directress. To protect the identity of the children and teachers I will be using the first initial of their name, but their age and behaviors will be factual.
I start my observation at around 8am, for today’s purpose of observation I am not working as teacher’s assistant so that I can focus on watching and recording. At my school we have a three hour uninterrupted work time where children can freely choose a work that they have had a lesson on, this time is from 8am-11am. I observe a boy named A. go over to a station and choose a work, A. is four years old. He chooses a cutting activity for valentines day. The work involves cutting a heart out of paper (fold the paper, then follow the pre-drawn dotted lines to cut the heart shape), the children in this class are familiar with cutting works as there are always about three available. It is important to note, that the children were asked to cut out their hearts and put them in a plastic ziploc bag when they were finished with them, the ziploc is a new thing for all the kids. I watch as A. cuts the heart out of the paper. He starts to look around the classroom for about five minutes, A. is sitting alone at a table. Then, A. takes some colored pencils and starts to poke holes through his bag, which contain other hearts he has made the previous days. At first A. just poked one hole, he continued to look around, waited a few more minutes and then he poked about five more holes in the bag. The other two teachers were giving individual lessons to children so the task went unnoticed. A. then took the colored pencils and began grinding them onto the bag, in turn creating more holes and breaking some of the colored pencil tips off. The colored pencils left an interesting residue on the bag, and the broken tips trickled into the holes in the bag A. continued to do this for about two more minutes, then he carefully put away his work and went off to another part of the classroom, where he sharpened some (not all) of the colored pencils he broke. I believe that this is a good example of a level one mistaken behavior. The child is familiar with the cutting work, but not necessarily familiar with the use, texture, and ‘fun’ of the ziploc bag. It appeared during my observation that the child was exploring the cause and effect scenario, and that he maybe was not challenged enough just by the ‘cutting’ the hearts out. He was very curious about the bag. I think that this child had chosen a work that was not challenging enough for him, he maybe would have benefitted from cutting the hearts out, and then perhaps using a hole puncher to add...

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