As a part of my professional development, I was asked to write a reflection essay after each unit as well as a final reflection essay at the end of the course. In my unit reflections, I reflected on what lessons or skills I would continue to use in the classroom as well as what I would do differently the next time I taught. I found this to be especially useful for reminding myself about events that took place weeks and months ago. Also, there were moments where I rethought my course layout and calendar. These short reflections offer good examples of my frame of mind through out my first semester at UA.
In my final reflection "Reflection #4," I chose to write and reflect about the concepts of comfort in the classroom. I came to the realization that attempting to make students comfortable with writing is a waste of energy. "Comfort" as a concept involves situations beyond my control in many cases. Instead, I thought that students and I should acknowledge their discomfort with writing in the classroom and develop strategies for overcoming it. Definitely more reflection on concept rather than events, this essay will likely inform the next version of my teaching philosophy to be written in the Spring semester.