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Setting Teaching Goals

We suggest seven key areas for thinking about teaching goals for the person you mentor. These areas will also form the basis for criteria you’ll look for during videotapings or classroom observations.

Example criteria to consider for 7 key areas

1. Content

  •     exhibits firm knowledge of material
  •     uses relevant examples
  •     makes assumptions clear
  •     makes connections between topics
  •     gives clear, correct explanations

2. Motivation

  •     excites student interest
  •     connects material to previous student experiences
  •     answers the“so what?” question

3. Organization

  •     begins class ontime
  •     gives clear agenda, goals
  •     concepts are organized thoughtfully
  •     distinguishes major/minor points
  •     clearly marks transitions
  •     uses mini-summaries
  •     repeats important concepts
  •     brings closure, summarizes conclusions

4.Presentation /delivery

  •     makes goodeye contact
  •     exhibits confidence
  •     uses goodnon-verbal gestures
  •     uses enthusiasm and humor where appropriate
  •     has good voice quality and pacing
  •     uses teaching methods appropriate for content
  •     moves discussions along productively

5. TA-student interactions

  •     uses students’ names
  •     responds tostudentreactions and difficulties
  •     accepts/invites criticism
  •     varies levels and types of questions
  •     encourages and validates student contributions
  •     urges student thought and participation
  •     incorporates student responses into lessons
  •     answers studentquestions clearly and directly
  •     gives students enough time to think about and respond to questions

6. Classroom environment

  •     is respectful of students
  •     encourages mutual respect among students
  •     treats class members equitably
  •     maintains authority in the classroom
  •     is able to admit error or insufficient knowledge

7. Instructional materials, use of media

  •     includes useful diagrams, illustrations
  •     uses multiple ways to illustrate a concept
  •     uses handouts, PowerPoint, video, or other technologies appropriately
  •     materials are well organized and integrated with lesson plan