February 4, 2014
Recap: This was the first day at my Semester 5 field experience classroom. It was mainly focused around getting to know the students, but also getting to see how my cooperating teacher ran the classroom. My partner and I had been present for their P.E. class (with 66 Grade 6 kids), English, and Math. The cooperating teacher had told me and my partner not to worry about planning anything because she had set up how we were going to be introduced and the small work that we would do. Therefore, instead of having my own plan, I was able to just make notes and observe. What I would consider my victory would be that during the small group work, I helped my group of 8 to understand the new concepts and be able to see their excitement when they understood (that a fraction actually means division).
Things that I would have changed: Even though my cooperating teacher had suggested not to plan an introductory lesson, I should have suggested to have one. It was just really disorganized because we had introduced ourselves in P.E. to the 66 students, but never got names from any of them. Although the class of 66 would be hard to remember names, for English and Math the group decreases to 15-30 students. If I was able to go back and redo this morning I would have introduced myself to the group of 66 but had an introductory game for the beginning of English. It would have been nice to get to know my students a little bit more and have them more familiar with me.
What I have learnt: This was a very exciting week just to get into the realization that I will be teaching in front of my own class. One of the questions I had made before the start of my field experience was that I wanted to gather effective methods for gaining my student’s attention while they are chatting or after group work. One of the methods I had seen this day was that the cooperative teacher had used clapping patterns, which their students repeat, to get everyone’s attention. I thought this was a great idea and the 3 times I had seen it in action, it had always been successful. I plan to use this during my own lessons and see if it is as effective for me, as it was for her.
Next week I will be teaching my first lesson, very excited!