As I sit here procrastinating from a 3000 word essay, I feel it is a good opportunity to reflect on my PGCE year so far.
Before starting my PGCE I read many blogs and their main tips before starting the course were:
- Sleep lots
- See your friends and family
- Get fit
- Enjoy your summer
With the resumption that all these things would not be possible during the PGCE.
In my ignorance I thought that I would be fine and that the challenges that many others have faced just wouldn’t hit me, however I can tell you that they are right!
As the Christmas holidays approached and all my friends on undergraduate courses took their month long holidays before exams in January, I still had one more week at university to go and I was shattered before it had even started! However, my body clock was now programmed to get up at 6.30 every morning so a lay in was looking unlikely! Since the Christmas holidays finally began for me, my body clock has readjusted to its teenage self and I managed to have a good 13 hours sleep (catching up on all those missed hours during the term!) and I feel a lot better.
However, I thought I would use this post to reflect on the key things I have learnt in my first term on the course and identify some things I would like to consider implementing in my second placement.
Firstly the successes..
No. 1 – I got a job!! It is very early in the year but I saw a post on TES and decided to go for it. It was a long interview day but it was a great experience and it paid off taking a risk.
No. 2 – My first placement school was brilliant – everyone really worries about where they are going to be placed and whether they are going to have a nice mentor or not, but from speaking to some of the PGCE students in my subject, everyone was sad to leave their mentors and move on to another placement.
No. 3 – I passed my first assignment – the worries of how to use a new referencing system, alongside the differing expectations of a new university set us all on edge when we had to hand in our assignments, but luckily the majority of us passed. The university were way more supportive than my previous university in assignment help and I feel more confident in completing this next essay although this one is at masters level!
N0. 4 – I have made some great friends on my course which I hope to stay in contact for a long time to come. It has great being able to meet so many like minded people who all have very different methods of approaching teaching and I have learnt so much from them!
But what would I like to do differently next term?
Next term I start a new placement, in a completely different environment, it is a school rather than a college so I will have to remember the students will call me ”Miss”, also the ability range of the students is very different.
No. 1. – Make better use of planning my lesson – although we do have to create a lesson plan for every lesson we do, I made them feel like a burden to me and that they weren’t of any benefit. I read a great blog on lesson planning which made me rethink lesson planning and I would like to give more time to it in the future: TeachAndLearnWithGeorgia
No. 2. – Start using lollipop sticks to select students for questioning – I used this in my interview and it worked brilliantly, it meant that nearly every student in a 30 minute lesson answered a question and they all felt responsible for coming up with an answer.
No. 3 – Creating a bank of resources – this will happen over time but I never keep a list of some of the great idea’s that I come up with or have seen other people use (mainly on pintrest!) so I have already started creating a list of ‘I’m stuck’ idea’s on word for when I really have no clue what to do for a lesson. I am also going to upload them to the blog when I think I have found something particularly special for anyone struggling for idea’s.
In the meantime have a lovely Christmas!