For the eight weeks of my professional field experience, I spent Thursday mornings in a grade 3 classroom in Glen Elm School learning from a diverse group of students and their teacher. During my field experience, I had the opportunity to observe many lessons in various subjects, attend a pizza party, facilitate a spelling test, go skating at the local skating rink, and plan and teach my very first lessons. This was my first opportunity to be a “real” teacher and I loved every minute of it!
The week before Easter I had the opportunity to plan and teach an Easter-themed science class. We spent an entire hour learning and exploring eggs. I had a lot of fun watching the students explore and apply their prior knowledge to something as simple as eggs. I also really enjoyed challenging their prior beliefs. (Did you know eggs can be different colours besides white?!) Classroom management was definitely difficult but nevertheless I enjoyed practicing keeping twenty-four students engaged and on track.
Another highlight from my experience was when I took the opportunity to join the class when they went skating at a local rink. I particularly enjoyed this because it gave me the chance to build relationships with the students and get to know them outside of the classroom.
Here are my final reflections from my weekly field journal
“As I reflect on the last eight weeks and the weekly focus questions I realize that they are interconnected and that they will relate to my future as a teacher. The weekly discussions had me reflected on the best practices and strategies while teaching a diverse group of students. It is interesting to note that a class can diverse in many ways besides their appearances such as their abilities, their sexual orientation and gender expression or their families financial situations. The theme of this class, through the lectures, discussion, field experiences and assignments, is that as teachers we will need to be prepared to support a vast amount of unique students using many different strategies. It has also been made clear to me that there will be plenty of support available for us once we become teachers in the form of our colleagues and supervisors.
My experiences in the grade three classroom of Glen Elm has confirmed my desire to be a teacher. Now that I’ve had a real taste of being and elementary educator I cannot imagine myself doing anything else! I realize that I have only been exposed to a small amount of what will be required of me in my profession, and I have much to learn. However, do teachers ever really stop learning?!
From here my goals are to become a teacher that
1) Creates an inclusive classroom that provides the support that each student requires
2) Inspires my students to learn through interactive and engaging lessons
3) Builds a relationship with all of my students so that they feel they can trust and respect me.”