Content Organization and Teaching Techniques in Elementary School
Our class, Educational Psychology PSY 242, has been identifying best practices in modern education throughout the semester. This project synthesizes classroom observations from Kindergarten and First Grade classrooms at Community School of Davidson (CSD) from February 2017, and relates these observations to concepts covered within the course. Quantitative and qualitative data demonstrate differences in the structure and content of these two classrooms, but similarities in how the teachers elicit answers and give feedback. Structurally, Kindergarten students participated in a blocked lesson structure, whereas the First Grade students participated an interleaved lesson structure. However, despite the differences in structure, both teachers used similar managerial techniques to command and maintain the focus of their students with a combination of known-answer questions and prompting, characteristic of Western educational practice. Based on these observations, we recommend that teachers follow similar lesson structures for Kindergarten and First Grade students, keeping in mind the varying cultural and contextual factors that led to success in these classrooms at CSD.