Name: María Francisca Rojas Victoriano
Grade High School
Select and describe the characteristics of both the institution and the classroom that
you consider to be relevant for contextualizing the unit plan you will develop.
Description of the institution:
The Pacific School aims to educate students regarding research, post-secondary
education and the English language as a tool for development and communication. The
previously mentioned words are explicitly presented as the school’s vision.
In terms of a curricular project, the school does not present a clear statement on what
they have planned for the school, but they do refer to a Proyecto Educativo Institucional
(PEI). The school’s website, which is available to anyone who wants to know more
about the institution, presents a pdf file with the complete document, so parents can be
aware of the educational development of the school their sons and daughters are
attending to. The PEI is expressed in detail; it presents the objectives of the project,
which are primarily focused on educating students so they can think of higher/post-
secondary education as a goal. The institution clearly refers to the teaching and learning
of the English language as one of the most relevant aspects of the education they offer
to the community, which is why they impart English as a major subject from preschool.
When it comes to all subjects in general, the school states that educating students is a
dynamic process, which demands changes in teaching methodologies and adapting to
new technologies in order to educate men and women for the future.
In terms of infrastructure:
Located in Lautaro Street #185, in Chiguayante, The Pacific School is a subsidized high
school which counts with two different areas: one building is located separately because
it aims to educate little children who are two or three years old (nursery), four and 5
year olds (pre kinder) and kindergarten. The second area of the school is meant for
elementary and secondary school students to attend to. The Pacific School has sixteen
classrooms, because there is only one class for each year of education: only one 1st
grade and the same happens between 1st
grade, but the situation changes in
secondary school, where there are two classes for each grade: two 1st
grade high school,
grade high, etc.
Regarding other spaces for students to improve their knowledge and study apart from
the classroom, there is a library for them to go and ask for material, books or a radio; in
the case of English studies, boys and girls who study in this school can go and ask for
dictionaries. When it comes to new technologies, students have the possibility to access
internet in the computer lab, where they cannot go by themselves, they must attend with
the English teacher, who has to ask for the lab a month before using it.
Description of the classroom:
Inside the classroom, the only tool given to the teacher to work with is a whiteboard;
there are not any other elements for teachers to use, like a data, a radio, or some papers
for students to work with.
The student’s desks are placed in rows facing the whiteboard, where they must sit in
pairs that are selected by the teacher, so the students do not sit with whom they will
behave badly or talk too much. When working in groups, students arrange the tables and
the chairs to make it easier.
Students start classes at 8:30 AM., and they must put on their aprons as soon as the
When it comes to English classes, students use a course book that their parents must
buy at the beginning of the year, which is written by National Geographic. With this
book, students learn by reading, listening and writing; in terms of speaking, the teacher
presents most of the class in English, using Spanish only to clarify instructions. Students
are expected to speak in English as much as they can, in order to develop conversations
in this target language.
Apart from using the book, the teacher presents the students some videos with no
subtitles for students to try harder to understand the language.
The sources used for this part of the assignment are the PEI, conversations with some
teachers, the school’s website and observation during class periods.
Select and describe the characteristics of your class, both individually and as a group,
which make relevant factors for class planning and for quality learning in a certain unit.
The class presents a total of 33 students, where 18 are male students and 15 are female
students. There are 5 students with special needs (NEE), a student who has not attend to
school for several weeks because of major health problems, and a student who is
exempt of the English class because of a medical diagnose regarding a physiological
When it comes to class environment and relationships between students, there have
been situations of bullying, where the teacher has had to create ways to make students
not to tease on their classmates, like paying a fine which will have a certain price by
analysing the type of bullying made by a student. Regarding the relationship between
the English teacher and the students, the environment is made of respect and familiarity,
since the English teacher is also in charge of the class (Profesor Jefe)
Analyse the information gathered in order to determine which factors of the context
and the students will primarily influence your design for quality teaching for the
students of that specific class.
Some factors I believe to be relevant for quality teaching:
- The institution contemplates English as a mean for students to develop in a
globalised system, which can also give them different tools for them to grow and
have better opportunities in the near future. The fact that teaching and learning
English are part of the school’s vision and mission, gives me the opportunity to
explore the different aspects of this language and try to find new alternatives,
activities and materials for students to broaden their knowledge on the subject.
- Values are an important part of the school interests when it comes to the
teaching-learning process, and as a teacher it is important for me to have in mind
that students must be educated in both knowledge of information and values
such as honesty, responsibility and respect, which is the school’s motto.
- Consequently, I will not try to make any major changes in the students’ structure
of the English class; because they feel comfortable with the way the classes are
developed. I will take what my cooperating teacher does, which is speaking in
English during classes and role playing, so that the students practice the
language in context by pretending to be somebody else, someone they admire,
Make a reflection on the possibility of having a proper knowledge of the students in
the context of your practice.
There are some pros regarding procedures and sources:
- The students reports presented on the class book and the school’s platform are
reliable, because they are supervised by administrative members of the school.
- Having regular conversations with different teachers about the class to be
analysed makes it more advantageous instead of interviewing them just for the
purpose of this analysis, because it becomes a process, where I have been able to
listen to different facts and information given by the teachers through a period of
time and at the same time observing the students’ behaviour and their learning
process regarding what the teachers previously discussed with me.
- The school’s website and the platform present detailed information about the
school and its members.
- The importance given by the school to the teaching and learning of English as a
second language gives me the opportunity to be involved in a classroom where
the subject I will teach is a priority and it gives me and other English teachers
the advantage of developing new activities and methodologies which have not
been present in the schools I have attended as a teacher so far.
There are also some cons:
- The availability of resources regarding English is limited, because students are
not allowed to enter the lab to find information and there are not any softwares
related to English installed in the computers of the lab.
- When it comes to students with special needs, there are no specifications on their
diagnoses or information on their weaknesses or advantages, which makes it
difficult for me to know how to make the class more effective for them.