I have decided to write a blog about my journey of becoming a qualified primary school teacher as I think (and hope) it will help me become more reflective and give me a nice record of how I am developing and transforming into the role of a teacher. Whilst completing my three year degree I am making it an aim to embrace every opportunity that comes my way and try to fill my time with as many experiences as possible!
Second year placement has come round so quickly but I’m so excited! I somehow managed to land my dream school in a reception class.
I’ll be spending the next 8 weeks in a private school, teaching little ones and improving my skills and gaining new experiences.
Today I splashed out on a new working wardrobe and got a haircut. Polished and ready to go!
When it comes to resources and cut little flashcards I don’t know any EYFS who doesn’t love collecting and making them! writing on a whiteboard can be equally as satisfying, so I hope some other practitioners understand the uncontrollable joy I had finding these tabletop pocket charts complete with a whiteboard, pen and 78 flashcards.
I love TK Maxx and their children’s range can be really good. I spotted this alpabet chart for £3.99. I quickly grabbed it and scurried away to a corner of the shop like a squirrel with a nut.
It’s the perfect size for a table or display and the changeable cards are clear, simple and I personally like that the font uses a normal ‘a’. There are so many activities to be done on this and its going to be a staple for small group work and one to one sessions.
After finding the bargain in the shop, I searched for it on eBay and found the number one for £8 and free delivery. Still not a bad price for what this is!
I have so many random jobs to do before university starts up again next week and while I sit here at my computer I can’t help but notice how quiet it is in the roads today! It’s a glorious autumn day, blue skies and the sun is gleaming. All I can think about it those teachers trapped in the noisy classrooms! When you’re not in an environment you know during a time you would usually be in one it can feel strange, so I feel a bit out of place today! But I will just enjoy the peace and quiet until my next placement.
After all of the stresses last year after failing a placement due to illness, I felt so nervous for my new placement which took place back in April. I am so happy to say that it all went well, in fact I don’t think it could have gone any better. I went in with an open mind, kept myself open and honest when people asked if I was okay because an issue I had last year was that everyone was surprised I wasn’t well!
My class teacher was lovely, the other staff members were really welcoming and there were a lot of students from university in the new cohort who I got to meet and spend lunchtimes with. This has really helped with my slow progress into year two as at least I will know a friendly face!
So I passed and am in the middle of my online enrollment to year two. It finally feels like I might see the end of this very dark tunnel and 2016 should be a much chirpier year. In other news, my boyfriend and I just moved into a flat together which is lovely and will definitely help matters as I get to come home every night to my best friend and biggest supporter.
Last week was tiring despite it being a four day week so this weekend I decided not to spend too long doing planning and writing up my observations and evaluations for university. I really needed to get these jobs done but I value my health over my job any day, something I learnt after being continuously signed off last year.
The teacher/home life balance is achievable but it can’t be upheld every weekend. So if you work in a school or in any job where you have to continuously do extra work at home, let yourself have one weekend, two days a month to just not do any work and have time to yourself. You will be much more productive in your role having de-stressed a little and it is great for getting into a positive mindset.
I am now off to get an early night because what a great way to start the week, fresh and awake first thing on a Monday morning. Keep smiling, stay positive and encourage others around you to take on a positive vibe.
They are never really welcomed and can be huge inconveniences to our daily routines. I had my first observation last Friday, what a way to finish my first full week back in school!
I felt it had gone okay, not amazing or outstanding just average what you would expect five days into a placement. However, my placement tutor has a funny way about talking and getting his points across. So after a quick chat afterwards I felt confused a bit disheartened. That evening he emailed the write up of my observation and I cried it read so negatively! It ruined my bank holiday weekend and I panicked about returning to school.
Today I reread my observation form and I realise how my mindset from Friday had impacted the way I was reading the comments. I read it in such a negative way when actually he had offered me lots of advice to further my skills and I had completely missed that I was graded a 2 (good in Ofsted terms). This has made me feel much happier about the observation but I also feel a bit silly!
It’s important to act as naturally as possible during observations so you can get an accurate feedback. This feedback may not be what you want tp see or hear but it’s really useful to have some guidance and a target to work towards.
From now I will try to embrace these observation opportunities and act humbly in my teaching practice.
I am looking for advice from students and trained teachers who still live at home with their parents.
My university is only about 40 minutes from my home and as it is in an expensive city it seemed silly to spend so much money on the rent. I commute in which is bearable, but what I am really struggling with is living at home with my parents whilst I am on the teaching placements.
They are such important and pressurising weeks which you really need the right support systems at home for to make sure you relax and can feel comfortable. My mum works in a school and is currently going through a stressful time, she is highly strung most of the time anyway and as soon as she comes home will talk non-stop about her day. I found this last year a bit irritating but it was nice to see her babble on to my dad and it actually encouraged me to want to enjoy my job and have lots to speak about too.
This year I am really struggling with the fact I am treated like a respected adult in my classroom but not by my parents at home. I almost feel like I am living two lives. I have no space for any of my stuff…if you are a teacher you will understand how much paperwork and resources can gather up and take over your home! I can only store everything in my room.
Then there is the issue of my bedroom being my get away space, the place I plan and mark work, do my university work and I have hoards of stuff related to work which I see first thing I wake up and last thing before I sleep.
Little things like buying food for my placements and storing it is an issue too. I buy my own food and have to keep most of that in my room as well!
It seems like I am living in quite an unsupported home where I have little respect from my parents. Without wanting to sound spoilt, I wouldn’t be living here if I could afford it, so how can I make the best out of this situation?
Feeling extra stressed and tearful at the lack of comfort and support!