Beyond Collaboration: An Appreciative Inquiry Into Lesson Study

lesson studyThis study uses appreciative inquiry into lesson study in which the overall design is governed by qualitative inquiry focus on: (a) stories and images that helped teachers in doing lesson study in a new and constructive light; and (b) qualities of lesson study would help make it sustainable. Appreciative inquiry is adopted as a method based on the assumption that researches which apply this are participative in nature and recognizes that teachers learn collaboratively by adapting their knowledge to their experiences. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on January 8, 2013 in Lesson study training, Mathematics


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Uncovering Alternative Conceptions of Diffusion and Osmosis Through Lesson Study

Through lesson study, a research lesson on diffusion and osmosis was developed collaboratively among four Biology teachers of a partner high school in Metro Manila and four NISMED researchers.  The group developed a structured inquiry activity on diffusion and osmosis using existing activity sheets of the partner teachers as references.  Student learning and alternative conceptions were closely observed during the implementation of the lesson.

lesson on osmosis

Students performing the experiment

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Posted by on January 4, 2013 in Science


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An Analysis of Problem Solving Activity in a Mathematics II Class

solving quadratic lessonIn the project Collaborative Lesson Research Development (CLRD), four Mathematics II teachers together with a UPNISMED facilitator collaboratively developed, critiqued, and revised a lesson on Solving Quadratic Equation Using Quadratic Formula. The lesson utilized the approach teaching  through problem solving. Teaching through problem solving is an approach wherein a problem is given to the students at the start and is used as context to teach a topic as well as to develop skills and apply these skills to unfamiliar situations.  It is characterized by students’ deep construction and understanding of mathematical ideas and concepts.  The problem in the lesson used a real life context and it involved different ways to solve it.  The nature of the problem provided an opportunity for the students to apply their previous knowledge and skills and experience thinking skills like representing, looking for patterns, and generalizing.

The study focused on  the content of the problem solving activity of the lesson.   How the students progressed in the problem solving process and how the teacher provided scaffolding so that the students would complete the task were the ones given particular attention. To follow up the students’ progress and the scaffolding the teacher provided during the problem solving activity, Polya’s Four Steps of Solving a Problem was used as a guide. At first, the students experienced difficulty in solving the problem. However the difficulty was addressed when the teacher provided the necessary scaffolding.

The result of the problem solving activity was an “eye opener” to the four Mathematics II teachers.  They realized that the reason why the students had difficulty in solving the problem was that they were not exposing the students to problems involving multiple solutions; to problems involving the skills of looking for a pattern, generalizing and “modelling”. The problems they usually give are problems involving only one solution and an answer of numerical in nature.

The full text of the study is one of the chapters of the book titled “BOOK 1.  LESSON STUDY: PLANNING TOGETHER, LEARNING TOGETHER” which will be published in print form by UP NISMED this first quarter of 2013.

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Posted by on January 4, 2013 in Mathematics


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North Fairview HS kicks off lesson study cycle 3

North Fairview HS kicks off lesson study cycle 3

Dr. Soledad A. Ulep, Director of UP NISMED, together with the UP NISMED staff, paid a courtesy call to the new principal of North Fairview High School (NFHS), Mrs. Sheridan G. Evangelista on 17 August 2012.  During the meeting, Dr. Ulep, introduced the Collaborative Lesson Research and Development (CLRD) project of UP NISMED to the new principal.  CLRD aims to promote lesson study and teaching science through inquiry and mathematics through problem solving. Lesson study is a school-based teacher-led continuing professional development model. She discussed the key features of lesson study, namely:  (1) lesson study provides teachers a concrete opportunity to see teaching and learning in the classroom; (2) lesson study keeps students at the heart of professional development activities; and (3) in lesson study, teachers can be actively involved in instructional change and curriculum development.

In addition, some UP NISMED staff recounted the NFHS Lesson Study groups’ experiences during the first two cycles. They briefly explained a typical lesson study cycle which involves the planning of a research lesson, implementation of the research lesson and post-lesson reflection and discussion. They emphasized that these stages were collaboratively done by the NFHS Science teachers (Chemistry and Physics) and UP NISMED staff in accordance to the lesson study sub-goal. The sub-goal formulate was for the students to participate actively in communicating their ideas by asking questions and finding answers to their own questions.

During the meeting, the benefits gained by the NFHS Chemistry and Physics teachers and their students from the CLRD project were also highlighted. It was mentioned that an improvement in the collaboration among teachers in lesson development was observed. It developed a harmonious working relationship among them. Moreover, the performance of the students in the 2011-2012 Division Achievement Test for Chemistry also improved.  With this, Mrs. Evangelista,  signified full support to the CLRD project for its third implementation in NFHS, stating that “I’ve been looking forward for this kind of activity.”

The meeting was also attended by the NFHS Science Department head, Mr. Michael A. Nazareth and UP NISMED staff, May R. Chavez, Dennis L. Danipog, Jacqueline Rose M. Gutierrez, Cerilina M. Maramag and  Rolando M. Tan.

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Posted by on August 31, 2012 in Science


All is well that [continues] well: The NFHS Chemistry Lesson Study Group

All is well that [continues] well: The NFHS Chemistry Lesson Study Group

“It destroyed the wall between the senior and junior teacher. The CLRD program made the group unite. It opened an avenue for change in attitude toward work and co-workers, and for growth in profession.”

Collegiality and collaboration — important aspects of Lesson Study that our team realized over a period of time.

Back 2010, under the UP NISMED Collaborative Lesson Research and Development (CLRD) program, we formed one Lesson Study group composed of three UP NISMED Chemistry staff and five North Fairview High School (NFHS) Chemistry teachers and their Science Coordinator.  Reminiscing, the teachers of our team divulged that there was a mixed feeling of excitement, enthusiasm, and anxiety, at the start. When the first cycle started, enthusiasm died down and anxiety went up.

Three months before the first cycle, the team set a goal during a week-long workshop-orientation. The goal is to let the students ask questions and find answers to their questions. Come August 2010, with that goal in mind, our team sat together to plan our first research lesson.  We only had two planning sessions to come up with a lesson having a clear outline how the goal will be attained using the topic, acids and bases. It was harder than we thought. Much harder when some of the team members were reserved in sharing their ideas in developing the lesson.  It caused some tension. More tension came in when the planning sessions are almost over and the lesson plan is still half-baked. We ended with a sketchy lesson plan. Even so, the team decided to proceed with lesson implementation due to limitations in schedule; leaving to the lesson implementer to fill whatever gap there is. Quite expected, the implementer was anxious that the lesson will not be executed properly; anxiety doubled with the thinking that it is the lesson implementer, and not the lesson, that the team will observe. This was almost the same for the second implementer. It was quite a stress-filled cycle.

But, wait! There’s a rainbow after a storm. As the team revisited what happened during the 2 research lesson implementations, the team realized the potential of the lesson that was together designed. With the chosen motivation wherein the teacher “magically” changes the “color of water”, students were curious to know what made it so. They were so excited and zealous in asking the teacher, “why and how it happened”.  The students then were given another activity that will answer their questions. Students were excited and engrossed in doing the activity. It was equally exciting for the team to see the students behave this way. We want more of this!

But, wait! Let’s not forget the stress before thisSo, for the second cycle, the team acknowledged the need for more planning sessions. This gave the team added days of interaction which became an opportunity to get to know each other more; incidentally, strengthening what collegiality and collaboration mean and how these are truly significant in realizing the program’s goals.

Forward, by November this year, the team will continue in doing its third cycle — still enthused in collaboratively coming up with a chemistry lesson infused with inquiry-based principles. And for all the stress that we had, we just charged them to experience. Anyway, wisdom comes from experience, right? So indeed, all is well that continues well.

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Posted by on August 9, 2012 in Science