Human Development and Family Studies – Classroom Simulation
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Human Development and Family Studies – Classroom Simulation

I’m Mitzi Ziegner and I’m the
instructor for HDFS 3306 child and adolescent guidance in the Department of
Human Development and Family Studies. The classroom simulation activity is an
activity that I planned just to differentiate once and for all the
difference between developmentally appropriate and developmentally
inappropriate practice so for the purposes of this activity these students
experience two different teachers one is Mrs. DIP, who is this is
developmentally inappropriate practice and onw is Mrs. DAP who is
developmentally appropriate practice. The activities planned are open-ended on the Mrs. DAP side, very focused on choice and the teacher is really a part of the learning
environment down on the student’s level making encouraging statements about what
they’re doing. On the Mrs. DIP side, I really make a conscious
effort to stand up the whole time kind of talking over them, down to them,
everything has to be done in a certain regimented way. There is no room for choice. Music plays. The day of the activity, we just number one, two, one, two. And the ones or the twos dependingon the semester, one set of numbers will be in Mrs. DIP’s class and one set will be in Mrs. DAP’s class so I
have them lined up outside of the room before coming in, I set the room up. The
activities are similar, but the experience that they haven’t couldn’t be more
different. Are you a one? Okay, so you’ll go right over here. Okay, go. Have a seat. Just no welcome, no nothing. The other team came in and she like , nice to them, giving high fives. High five! I’m happy you’re here! Welcome! Really cheerful. And we were all like, “Why didn’t we get that side?” I’m sorry, who left this mess in the small group area? She’s just like,
really sharp and always standing up like straight and looking down on us. Is
that a broken crayon? I just can’t believe that. Okay friends it’s time to move to our next
activity! It was really fun, she interacted with us a lot. She gave us a
lot of choices, she would get on our level whenever she would talk to us which
made it feel like we’re equal with her. I heard some, you know, positive feedback “A dinosaur eating pizza?! Wow! That’s a
creative combo!” How are the resters? Oh…”That is so pretty, you know, what are
you drawing? Can we help,you know, this student decide on what to draw?” an it was just fun! Whereas on Mrs. DIP’s side, she was like, “What is
this? Why did you do that? Swans aren’t yellow. You know, just so rude. have you ever
seen a yellow Swan? Has anyone? Okay, gimme that please. No, no. That’s one thing I did forget to mention
but I figured that people would understand what the expectation is. We
don’t want to color any animal a different color than it actually is. So you’re gonna
need to start over, Trey. I’m very disappointed. I’m very disappointed in you. Okay. So, from that lesson, I really, really appreciated it because there are teachers that are like that and you find them more often than never.
It’s really just phenomenal learning about kids not even just kids. I’m mean we
learned so much about just life in general. I mean, you walk away from the
class like it was like an hour long TED talk you’re just like, mind is blown and
it’s I mean…you have to take Mrs. Ziegner’s class. She is so motivating and she is so sweet
and the stories that she brings to class some of them are really touching
and some of them are just eye openers. A lot of the things that she has discussed
in class with us, and like a lot of the stories that she tells I can relate to
because I work with foster children and there’s been certain things she talks
about in class that I actually take to work with me and I apply it to my work. So she’s
very inspirational she really is like for students who want to be teachers, she is a
great role model. I used to try to have both sides of the room get to have both experiences, but then I
realized, you know, in a real-world setting, a student doesn’t have that
opportunity to get to choose between an appropriate and inappropriate learning environment. Whatever they are placed in the
beginning of the school year they’re they’re stuck in that environment. It
really does affect how students feel about themselves so unfortunately, as over the top as
some of the interactions seem on the Mrs.DIP’s side, I’m not so sure that those aren’t pretty realistic things
that are happening. At the end, I have them work with someone who had the opposite teacher and they do
a T-chart. They write feeling words, one to two words phrases that say how they felt in the
environment. When you see that respected vs. disrespected, value vs. ignored, afraid vs. excited, you
know, that sharp contrast is so important and then I always ask them what
environment would you want your own child, a child that you care about to be in and it’s such
an easy choice. We hope that they feel special in their home environment that I,
in my years as a teacher, I know that some children don’t feel very valued in their home environment
so it’s all the more important that they treat everyone as if that they always are Mr. or a Mrs. DAP in their real-world
interactions with students again, to generate that lasting
impression because of course I want them to be successful while they’re here to make the grade they hope to receive. But what’s far
more important to me is that they carry this knowledge and information with them long after. Because it will enrich them as parents, as adults who interact with children in their
own lives and then of course as professionals as well. The bottom line is, this is a profession
that’s so important. If you’re choosing to work with children, and adolescents
and families we don’t have the option of getting it wrong.

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