I had forgotten how tiring prac can be. I AM SO TIRED.
I’ve been at my “new” school just over a week now, and I wanted to reflect on my professional experience this time around, which I didn’t find the time to do last time around.
Day 1 was a bit of a nightmare. I was freakishly tired, had freakishly sore feet half an hour into the day (bad shoe choice) and at the end of the day, my supervising teacher (ST) told me that the next day I needed to get up more, walk around the class, interact with the kids and assert my authority. Eek. I was scared.
I won’t lie – I was scared of him. His confidence in the classroom, his joking manner with the kids… and the fact that he is a he, that he’s male. On top of that, his maths lessons are amazing.
Now 8 days in, I feel SO much better. On day 2, I got out of the chair (with half a dozen blister bandaids, and more comfortable shoes on my feet) and made my presence more known in the classroom. And I haven’t stopped.
Yesterday my ST told me that he is really happy with how I am going – that I have blown away his worry from the first day that I’d just sit quietly in a chair at the back of the room (HA!) and that even though he has been teaching the lessons, in the last few days he’s felt like we have been team teaching, which is great. He also told me that he has no worried about my ability to handle the class. He has faith in me. Which is great.
Except that I haven’t taught yet. And that’s about to begin.
I’m working in a 5/6 class, and there are 3 other 5/6 classes in the school. The 4 teachers make up the 5/6 team, and they work pretty closely together. This is something new for me, as in my last school there were two Year 3 teachers, but they programmed their lessons pretty independantly of each other, and did their “own thing”. In this team, the lessons are written by one person, and taught by all 4. My ST had a great background in teaching maths, so he writes the maths units of work. Another teacher writes reading. Another writes the writing lessons… and so on.
So next week I have not just one, but two big hurdles to leap. Not only do I have to start teaching reading and writing (literacy) lessons written by someone else, but I have to write a whole unit on multiplication and division… WHICH THE OTHER THREE 5/6 TEACHERS WILL USE IN THEIR CLASSROOMS. Eek. A bit nervous about that. Talk about pressure!
I am really loving this prac, and the time is flying. I have done 8 days, and only have 12 to go. That is crazy! And makes me a little bit sad. It’s definitely times like these that I realise how much I want to get into a classroom and have my own class. How much I was 27 little voices chanting “Good Morning Miss Stewart” to me 5 days a week, for 40 weeks of the year.”
The kids in my class are great. I am loving being with them. Being there has definitely taught me a few things, not only about teaching, but I have learnt how to spell definitely correctly, after 28 years! What an accomplishment! The staff are all lovely, and I have enjoyed the larger staff, and the mixing of P-2 and 3-6 staff in one staffroom, unlike my last prac where there were separate staffrooms for the junior and senior school on the split site.
I’m looking forward to teaching next week. I did my last prac in a Year 3 class, which I LOVED, and though that’s where I wanted to be, but I am loving Year 5 and 6 just as much, if not more!