4.0 Content Knowledge to Impact Student Learning

4.0 Content Knowledge – The teacher uses content area knowledge, learning standards, appropriate pedagogy and resources to design and deliver curricula and instruction to impact student learning

As I am planning my lesson, I incorporate a number of essential components to ensure that my teaching strategies are effective so that deep and meaningful learning takes place. My content area knowledge is displayed through use of a wide range of effective pedagogical approaches, clear learning standards, and learning activities that are organized, suitable, challenging, differentiated, and progress with reasonable time allocations (Ernst & Ryan, 2014).

Effective pedagogical approaches that are practiced in my lessons include open- ended instruction, discovery learning, valuing clarification, authentic learning tasks, assessment and evaluation of learning, and peer teaching.  These elements create a learning environment that supports critical thinking skills, independence, and discovery of meaning and learning that is meaningful to each individual student. I include assessment and evaluation of learning into every lesson. Rubrics that are presented at the start of the lesson present lesson objectives that are in student language and list the clear success criteria so that students know the exact learning goal for that specific lesson. I find that when assessments are distributed throughout the lesson segment the teacher and student become aware of and can cater to the immediate gaps in understanding.

The learning activities are aligned with the learning target. The learning activities are engaging, include multiple learning styles, and challenge critical thinking skills. Learning activities build on each other throughout the lesson. As students are participating in the learning activities I scan the room to check and assess student engagement. When students are engaged, rich learning occurs. I will see active movement, the use of manipulatives, discussion and discourse, and students recording their answers as evidence of their lgroup-work-1.jpgearning (Ernst & Ryan, 2014, p. 17). During the learning activities students are grouped into ability levels. In a math lesson, I will pair or group high-performing students with benchmark students, and benchmark students with students who need more support. This way peer teaching and learning can occur. In reading, I pair and group students of the same ability. This way students are given equal opportunity to learn with each other and provides efficiency when I am trying to meet with the most students in a small amount of time. I focus my time with the students who need my scaffolding and support, and allow the proficient students independently engage in the learning that is necessary for their needs and growth.


Ernst, Kathy, and Sarah Ryan. Success from the Start: Your First Years Teaching Elementary      Mathematics. Print.

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