Monday, December 17, 2012 Y 4:06 PM
This morning I went to visit my new kindergarten for the first time. I was surprised by how big the rooms felt with floor to ceiling windows and very high roofs. The rooms were also quite pleasing to look at because they were filled with natural wood furniture and nice big low tables for the children to work at. My room will be room one (hence the blog title) and I will be sharing the space with two beautiful groups of children and two co-teachers. I also discovered this week that the outside space will be expanded with the fence dividing each room being removed, this will leave us with a larger space for the children to play and mix with the other groups.
Whilst I was there I also got a chance to see how my fellow teachers do their documentation and it was nice to see a variety of ways to do this. One of the teachers types up their observations on the days play into a ring binder and makes notes about what to change/ how/ why and links to learning stories - I found this method of observation to be quite aesthetically pleasing however i am not sure if it would be as accessible to parents as the second method.
The second teacher uses an A3 display folder to record observations and uses sticky notes and photographs to reflect their learning. She also has a small key of the VEYLDF on each page and uses colour to connect her observations to different areas of the framework. I like both methods and I think both would be good ways to record the learning in the classroom however I don't know exactly what my plans will look like until I start working.
Another interesting thing about today's visit is that I got to meet one of the children who will be attending kinder next year and his parents. I don't know if he will be in my group but I think I surprised myself with how confidant I did feel speaking to them. That is one of the scariest parts about this journey for me, answering the questions of the parents. I don't want to give the wrong answer but I don't know all the right ones yet to I think I will definitely have to watch my fellow teachers closely so get it right next year.
Friday is the clean up day at the kinder for 2012 and i am planning to go back in there and pick up the keys and maybe even help to sort out my very first classroom!
Sunday, December 16, 2012 Y 9:37 AM
I am truly heartbroken about the event that occurred in Newtown on Friday morning. I dont think there's even words to describe what those poor children and teachers had to endure on that day. Now there is 20 families that have lost their joy.
If school can't be a safe place then where can be?
I am deeply sorry for all of those people affected by this tragedy.
Thursday, December 13, 2012 Y 6:27 PM
So it has been quite a while since I posted on this blog but I thought I should share the exciting news I have received since last posting. Today I found out that I officially passed all of my uni classes and therefore I am now legally a teacher. I won't acutally graduate until May however I am still happy to know that I passed.
A few months ago I also managed to secure a job for 2013 working as a kindergarten (pre-school) teacher for a hopefully lovely bunch of four year olds.
I wont officially start until the end of January so for now I am simply trying to survive the disgusting Victorian heat and scouting many many ideas to put in place for next year.
I decided to change the name of this blog now that I know I will be teaching kinder and also to maintain some privacy.
Hopefully in the coming weeks/ months I will post some real reflections of what life is like as a REAL teacher
Wednesday, October 3, 2012 Y 12:06 AM
So some serious time has passed since my last post on this blog and in that time I have had the opportunity to grow and develop a lot as a teacher. In the past few months I have started my last semester of uni for my degree ever! Completed an 8 week placement in a grade 3 classroom ( and loved every second) and begun to apply for teaching jobs for next year.
In applying for jobs I have had to really consider what I value as a teacher and try to visualise where I see myself teaching. Do I want to work in a primary school? kindergarten? public school? child care? private school? rural or surburban school or a school in the city?
Would I be willing to work in a huge school (1000+) students?
Or a school with under 100 students?
Would working in a primary school now make it difficult to work in early childhood in the future? what about the other way around?
Since my placement experience I have mainly focused on applying for primary school positions in public schools however I have applied for many jobs and unfortunately have not yet had much success. It has been hard to find the motivation to keep on applying despite having so little success
however I am determined that in some way or another I will be a teacher next year. Wherever I end up I hope that it will be a place that I can feel comfortable and confident to continue my learning journey.
I have to just keep reminding myself that today's decisions don't have to dictate the rest of my life and I have to hope that potential employers will see the merit in having any experience even if it is not directly related to the field in which I am applying.
Wednesday, May 30, 2012 Y 2:59 PM
If I had the opportunity to ask all the teachers (and prospective teachers) I know one question it would be "what does creativity mean to you?" Last year I had a class on creativity and imagination in the curriculum and I must admit it has completely transformed the way I see myself as both a teacher and a learner. I feel sad for other student teachers who were not fortunate enough to take this elective because I think at the end of the day creativity is one of the essential elements to being human. As teachers we need to recognise that if we want students to be creative, act creative, and think creative, we must first understand what these things mean.
This is a topic that continues to inspire and change my thinking and something I hope to write about further in the future
Y 10:23 AM
Now that I am coming to the end of my teacher education there are a lot of different things weighing on my mind. The first and obvious thing I am nervous about is finding a job. It is scary to think about answering interview questions and submitting resumes for a job I am so passionate about. There is also the competition factor and the fact that there will probably be hundreds of other students graduating this year that I will be up against. I have to try and figure out what makes me so special and different from all these others in order to find a job.
Another major question weighing on my mind is whether I should teach primary or early childhood. I am really struggling with this decision because certainly their are elements of both that I really connect with. The beauty of doing a dual degree is that I have more options but it also makes it harder to decide where I'm heading. I figure to try and make this decision I should probably make a list of all the things that I love about both jobs and then go from their.
Pros for early childhood
- creativity is a major player in most early years classrooms more so than in primary
- more flexibility and freedom to develop the curriculum around students interests
- great structure of collaborative planning and team teaching
- Community focused and high levels of family engagement
- no national testing
- setting a foundation and love of learning that can set students on the right path for the rest of their education
- massive skill shortage and change of government subsidies means there are many early childhood education jobs available.
- I am passionate about teaching in the early years
Pros for Primary school
- Generally a greater opportunity for infusing technology into the classroom
- Greater in school support network, more teachers, more opportunities for advice
- Can see students progress through school and maintain a relationship with them for longer than your may in ece.
- clearly developed union support
- Many of my university peers are heading towards primary school education
- maybe one day I could instigate change and a shift towards the structure that I love about ece.
- there are many lead teachers to help with curriculum areas such as maths, English, science ect.
- the sorts of conversations and topics explored in the upper primary levels and very inspiring and enlightening.
-the days are longer but time seems to pass so much faster with the set up of primary classes
- I am passionate about teaching in the early years
Ah! I just don't know even listing my favourite things about each makes me love them a little bit more. I realise that it may be possible to do both but I am sceptical about how this would go. I have also been thinking that maybe I would like to do a masters some day and that throws me as well because I don't know how that would fit with being a full time teacher.
i think ultimate goal would be to work in a school that has both early childhood and primary education but unfortunately i don't know many schools like that around where I live.
So my question to you is what would you do in my position?
Wednesday, May 9, 2012 Y 10:23 PM
this video is asks some critical questions about the state of education today
Why do we quash childrens natural inclination to be creative?
what is the purpose?
what could the world be like if we nurtured this instead of destroying it?
about the blog.
Hello! I am Cara a new kindergarten teacher leaping into the classroom in 2013. I want this blog to be a place where I can keep a journal of my thoughts, feelings and lessons learned about the adventure that is teaching and a chronically of useful resources and experiences I find along the way. I also want to see how I can turn my hobby (sewing) into a useful tool within the classroom.
back in time.