Sunday, November 18, 2012

Initial 3 Week Placement

I will spare you the "I am sorry for not posting, life get's in the way etc..." paragraph and just get on with it.

My first placement was in a grade 2 and 3 combined class. I really enjoyed the experience. I taught a unit on math (Data Management specifically). for this unit I planned along side another teacher candidate who was in a grade 3 class. What I found important for my grade 3's was making sure they would know the expectations for the grade 3 testing at the end of the year. For the grade 2's, a lot of the concepts were new and it was making sure they could identify the parts of the graph.

I absolutely enjoyed working with the students. Seeing students struggle at the beginning and having that light bulb moment is so amazing. All of my students passed their quizzes and did well on almost all of the assignments I gave them.

Assignment wise, I only used the grade 3 textbook once and a few of the grade 2 handouts. I made the rest of the handouts and lesson plans myself. There are lot's of really good ideas on the internet that helped me as well and my teaching associate told me "Use the internet, that is why it is there!"

On top of teaching math, I taught a social studies lesson to the grade 2's on maps and a writing lesson on brainstorming the beginning, middle, and end of a story.

I read a novel aloud to the students and ran the Literacy cafe (where the students would rotate between reading by themselves, reading with others, work on writing, word work, and computers).

It was really hard to say goodbye to the students. One student said, "I really liked Miss Upshall because when we had questions she took her time to answer them and didn't just tell us to figure it out."

At the end, I wrote the class a book mentioning each of them individually. They all loved seeing themselves in the book and hearing what I wrote about them. It amazes me the intense excitement over such little things that students enjoy.

There were many great things about going on placement. There were some good lessons and some not so good lessons but everything is about learning. I found that as much as I taught the students, they taught me so much more.

The students taught me to be more assertive, to go over my lesson plans more than once, and to listen more effectively. My teaching associate taught me to question more effectively, to not put commands as a question, and to use a vast array of resources.

I will never forget the first class I ever taught and I am going to miss being with them everyday.

Now it is back to school for me. 8 weeks left of classes (not including Christmas holidays) before my 10 week placement.


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