Tips for Teachers and Classroom Resources

What Feedback To Expect from a Classroom Observation

By The Editorial Team

When it comes to classroom observation teaching requirements, teachers may become frustrated with the process. However, with a principal or other higher level administrator visiting the classroom, it is critical to consider it a learning opportunity. From time management to teaching style, this type of observation is an opportunity to gain feedback that is valuable for teachers to improve the education process.

Is time being managed properly?

Does the teacher maintain the flow of teaching in such a way that the students remain engaged and, at the same time, are able to get all of the information in within the allotted time? This one question can provide opportunities for both teacher and principal. Feedback may include some of the following:

  • Is the course of study planned for in lesson plans accomplished during the allotted time? Does the teacher run out of time to complete lessons?
  • Is there enough time included for questions and answers?
  • What type of method is set up to allow students to get back on track when the course of conversation moves beyond what the lesson plan entails?

Feedback from this situation provides an opportunity for the teacher to see if he or she is maintaining the proper flow of information during the classroom study. If teachers use feedback wisely, it can encourage opportunities for them to get students more information.

Is the teaching style effective?

Though most teachers and higher level administrators believe that student test scores are a better method for evaluating the effectiveness of a teacher, observations can provide some additional information. An observer is able to focus on classroom activities and watch as the teacher engages all types of students.  Things an observer may for:

  • Are teachers engaging in the teaching process?
  • Are all students engaged? What about those students who are at a high-risk for failure?
  • What methods of teaching are incorporated?
  • What other types of teaching methods could be used?
  • What limitations does the teaching style offer?

It is a very good idea to consider teaching style as a subjective. In some cases, feedback can encourage educators to expand their skills and to develop new techniques that could help further improve the teacher’s skills or abilities.

What is being done properly?

One of the key ways for observers to communicate with individuals is to do so with a focus on what the instructor is doing properly. Unless the lesson went very poorly, expect to learn what went right, such as communication strategies, problem-solving and teacher lesson planning.

What could have been better?

Though it is not always a good idea for teachers to hear a long list of potential problems or subjective information, this type of feedback can help him or her to improve. Some topics that may be presented during a feedback may include the following:

  • Questions about how a teacher could have prevented a problem or solved it more effectively may be asked. This type of open-ended question during a feedback review session will often be followed with ideas on how the problem could have been solved.
  • Strategies for teaching are presented and then reviewed during the feedback portion of a review. What strategies are being used? What new strategies could offer some assistance to the teacher?

Ultimately, it can be a challenge to understand classroom observation teaching processes without knowing what to expect. However, feedback is not meant to bring down a teacher. In nearly all situations, it points to areas where the students can benefit from other teaching styles, problem-solving methods and communication methods.

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