December 10

Year 2 Practicum Reflection: Week #7

To think that these next two weeks will be the last evaluated teaching experience I’ll have until I’m actually employed… I’ve come a long way as a teacher and have learned so much about education over the last year and a half. I’ve had my high points, where I have made a personal connection with a student or have seen a student exclaim, “ I GET THIS NOW!”. I’ve also had my fair share of lows, with periods of self-doubt, with phone calls home, and with personal prayer and reflection. Teaching is like a rollercoaster: the climb is nerve-wracking, the twists and turns will make you second guess your decision, but the thrill is something that you cannot find elsewhere.

At the After School Program, we had the Junior and Primary students team up again, but this time they were going to make festive decorations for the hallway. We gave them lots of paper, objects to trace, glue, and scissors, and they came up with some amazing creations. Now our hallway feels like a winter wonderland, complete with snowmen and reindeer.

We put a lot of emphasis on patterning this week so that we could wrap up that stand for now and move on to another concept. The students reviewed everything that we had learned in preparation for the assessment. On the morning of the test, we had a interactive activity that had students working in teams to identify a pattern rule and extend it as far as they could in a 2-minute period. After the 2 minutes were up, the timer rang and the students rotated to the next station and extended the previous team’s work. They had a blast collaborating and seeing how far they could extend each pattern.

Later that morning, while the students were out for recess, a little elf (Mr. Burton) went around to each desk and left a little something for each student to calm their nerves before the test.

This week in Phys. Ed., I was exposed to a new game by my Associate Teacher. She spoke about this massive ball that the kids could throw around and immediately I was in. The game is called Kin-Ball and there are a number of different variations of what you could do with this (trust me, it came with an activity manual). To get the students used to the ball, we had them lay on their backs and pass the ball to the next person around the perimeter of the gym. There were some kinks with students getting to excited and throwing or kicking the ball, but that was all part of the process of getting them used to accomplishing a task with the ball.

Next, we had the students work together in teams to move the ball from one side of the gym to the other without using their hands. There were some very interesting strategies, but nevertheless, the students had to work together to accomplish a goal which always makes for a beneficial Phys. Ed. and life lesson.

In Science, I wrapped our lessons on matter and its changes by demonstrating some chemical and physical changes. I started with the typical baking soda and vinegar experiment, but I put a balloon on the top of the bottle to show the students that a chemical change did occur, since a gas was created and inflated the balloon. Next, I did a demonstration of elephants toothpaste, which had the students very intrigued. I made sure that my ingredients were a little calmer than called for in the recipe so that I wouldn’t have to mop up the classroom, but then I showed them the video of what it could look like:

The next class, we discussed physical changes and how they differed from chemical changes. We talked about crumpling up paper and cutting it into pieces and how this depicts a physical change, since the paper is still paper. Next week, we will move into a culminating task where the students will conduct an experiment on their own. I can’t wait to see the student-directed, inquiry-based learning that takes place!

I still cannot believe that next week will be my last 5 days of practicum… I am thankful for these experiences and the practical learning I’ve been exposed to. Seeing other teachers thrive in their element is inspiring and I cannot wait to be in their shoes one day.

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Posted December 10, 2016 by Spencer in category "B. Ed.", "Education", "Learning", "Personal", "Teaching

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