As I mentioned in previous post, I have just finished my fourth professional experience placement and am due to start my fifth in less than a month. I’ve been pretty fortunate (like Samantha) to have worked across a broad range of year levels.
- Year 3,
- Year 7,
- Year 6, and
- Year 3 + Library.
After this semester, I will still have three more placements, so I think by the end of my entire degree I will have a good idea which year level suits be better.
Not only is my next placement with two different mentor teachers (Year 3 and library), it is also my first placement in a private school (Catholic in this case). I’ve wanted to experience teaching in a private school just to see the difference between the two types of schools.
Something that I’ve noticed (and that Dwayne also mentions), is the rise of using ICTs as a reward for students. I don’t think I actually like the idea of this (and I’m probably on the outs with this!), but bear with me….
Most of the times that I’ve witnessed students using ICTs as a “reward” is with SEP (Special Education Program) students. I’ve seen teachers give a student an iPad during parade to keep them occupied and out of trouble. Although this is a good idea in theory, it then leads to other students in the class seeing this and feeling left out. Most of the schools I’ve worked at only have a class set of iPads in the library or a couple in the SEP, so there isn’t a lot of opportunities for all students to experience this reward.
I think it ultimately all comes down to the resources available- if a class has a wide range of ICTs (not just iPads) then rewarding students with individual play with an ICT can be very useful… as long as it isn’t just a way to keep the student distracted or a type of busywork.
Like Christy, I have recently noticed just how much I use ICTs in my day-to-day life. Yes, there are the expected ICTs like social media sites, there’s also so many new ICTs I’ve been exposed to during my university career. Something I like to do is use a different type of program (or ICT) for each assignment I have to complete. Sometimes I have had to make a multimodal presentation (I think about three times now)- the first time I used Microsoft PowerPoint, something I’ve used a lot in my primary and high school career. For the next one, I tried using Sony Vegas (a video editing program).
This is only one small example of my exposure to ICTs. The sheer amount of ICTs out there on the “inter-webs” is astounding, and like Jocelyn mentions, the fact that YouTube and Google exist is a great way to find tutorials on how to use these programs/software’s/ICTs.
I recently found Kelsey’s post called Five Ways to Use Memes To Connect With Students. She raises an interesting point- it does provide a bit of a change to the students “usual” classroom. The post also links to an article entitled Five Ways To Use Memes To Connect With Students. I have to say, as a (fairly) young adult who uses social media apps like Facebook and Tumblr, I of course love a good meme (pun dog and Fry from Futurama being among my favourites), but should they really be used in the classroom?
I think it all boils down to how it is implemented and the dynamics of the classroom. If you have students who can’t look past the humour of the meme and are too raucous about it, then perhaps using memes to talk about class rules may not be the best idea. It can also be useful though, as some students may enjoy the use of familiar images to discuss class rules.
I also like the fact that the article has links to some printables that are ready to use!
Last week I completed my fifteen day placement for EDP3333! I was planning on posting about that on Friday or Saturday, but (of course!) I was too exhausted to do so.
I have to say, since my last placement did not go well, I was very anxious coming into it. However, I am happy to say that was probably my best placement so far!
My mentor was great (she was a nice balance between casual and strict- so I was comfortable in my teaching sessions when she was observing me), the class was good (first class I’ve had with no special needs, actually), and the school itself was fantastic. If I were to have one complaint, it would only be that the school itself was a 20-minute bus ride from my house, which of course is horrible at the end of a long day….
Since that one went so well, I’m now looking forward to my EDC3100 placement. I’ve yet to meet my mentor/s (that’s on Monday), but I’m going to be placed in a Year 3 class AND in the library. Something different…. but hopefully a great learning experience too!