A lot of college level teacher training programs talk about the importance of developing a “reflective practitioner” but what exactly does this mean for the classroom teacher? If you haven’t yet accepted responsibility for student learning than it doesn’t mean much at all. You’ll have some success as a teacher and some failures which you’ll most certainly blame on any number of factors. If however you believe that all students can learn at a high level and that your performance as a teacher has a direct impact on student learning, than reflection should be an integral part of what you do.
Below you will find a list of 30 Questions Teachers should be regularly asking themselves to ensure they’re classroom is as focused on learning as they would like it to be. Feel free to beg, borrow, steal and share however you see fit.
Modeling Reflection – Questions to Ask With Students
1.Was this activity successful….why or why not?
2.If we do this again, what can I do differently to help you learn more?
3.Did this activity help you learn more than others we’ve done? Why?
Classroom Culture – Questions to Ask About Your Rules & Relationships
4.Are the relationships that I have with my students helping or hindering their ability to learn?
5.Could the problems I have in my classroom be solved by pre-teaching my expectations or developing rules/procedures to deal with these issues?
6.Was my demeanor and attitude towards my class today effective for student learning?
7.Am I excited to go to work today?
8.Are my students excited to come to my class today? (How much does #6 impact #7?)
9.What choices have I given my students lately?
10.Can I explain at least SOMETHING about each of my student’s personal lives?
Curriculum and Instruction – Reflection on Assessment and Grading Practices
11.Does my gradebook accurately reflect student learning?
12.Do my assessments really reflect learning, or merely task completion or memorization skills?
13.Why did I REALLY choose this particular lesson to cover this objective?
14.What evidence do I have my students are learning?
15.What new strategies have I tried lately that might benefit a student I am struggling with?
16.In what ways am I challenging students who are clearly being successful in my classroom?
17.What do I do when students aren’t learning in my classroom?
18.Which students benefited from this activity?
19.Which students did not benefit from this activity?
Collaboration – Questions to Ask Ourselves About Our Place in a Professional Learning Community
20.In what areas can I still improve professionally?
21.What’s stopping me from improving in these areas?
22.In what ways can I support my colleagues in their student’s learning?
23.Do my actions as a teacher show my belief that all students can learn at a high level?
24.Do my actions as a teacher show that I take pride in my work?
25.Are the relationships I have with my colleagues conducive to creating a collaborative culture focused on learning?
26.Are the relationships I have with my student’s parents conducive to improving learning?
Mental Health – Questions to Help Teachers Maintain a Healthy Outlook
27.What new ideas have I tried in my classroom lately to keep myself energized about teaching?
28.What have I done lately to relieve stress and focus on my own mental health, to ensure I remain an effective teacher?
29.What things am I currently doing that I could realistically make less of a priority in my profession?
30.How much time have I spent with my friends and family in the last two weeks?
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