Classroom observation allows education students to observe teaching styles from mentor teachers and hone their own teaching skills. Observation checklists also allow student teachers and education students to get feedback on their own teaching skills when mentor teachers and peers fill out forms on a student teacher's performance. Experienced teachers frequently observe and report on new teachers as a part of ongoing training, and observations may go into the teacher's permanent work record.
Review the observation checklist form prior to observing a class. This allows you to become familiar with what you should be looking for when you observe a classroom, making you less dependent upon the list throughout the observation.
Make a list of things that you personally want to observe during the classroom. Consider things such as areas that you or the teacher (if you're the mentor) need improve on.
Observe the teacher while teaching his class, and mark the observation form as necessary; some spots might be a fill-in-the-blank section whereas others might be multiple choice or a checklist, depending on the observation rubric used by your school.
Review the form and alter your answers to stick to the facts. Formulate specific examples of what you liked about the teacher's methods and offer critiques on things that did not go as planned. Turn the observation form into your supervisor or teacher, if necessary.
- University of Minnesota: Classroom Observation Instruments
- StateUniversity.com: Classroom Observation- Purposes of Classroom Observation, Limitations of Classroom Observation, New Directions
- Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence: Classroom Observation as a Means of Gathering Feedback on Teaching
- Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence: Form for Providing Feedback on a Classroom Teaching Observation or Microteaching Demonstration