Tag Archives: timetable

The last post. PONG!

So, in all honesty for the last three weeks I have completely forgotten to write anything. Things have been full on. In the first two days at my new school my timetable changed three times and I moved rooms twice. I also found out that I would be teaching Geography … (I don’t even have a GCSE in Geography).

In the second week the police were called to my room to search the girls who had stolen my presenter clicker and the powerpoint remote.

I had some pretty bad classes and bad days. That being said, everyone has told me that this is the worst possible time to come into the school. Three weeks to the end. The kids are tired the staff are tired, I’m tired. Everyone just wants the summer holidays. The kids have had three or four or five members of staff this term so any consistency of behaviour is out the window. I’m getting used to new policies and procedures and a new school and new staff.

Everyone has told me that things will be much better in September when I have my own room. Everyone is rested and we’re all pulling together. The kids will know that I am their teacher. They will be my own books. I really hope things will be much different.

Anyway, I’m all finished for summer now. I’ve made it through. The last Friday I was off work as I graduated. I graduated in the morning and went and got our two new kittens in the afternoon! They’re gorgeous and called Myst and Riven.

My summer currently looks like socialising the kittens and stopping them tearing the house down (really they’re very good and already litter trained which is a bonus) and planning and preparing for next year.

I finally have my timetable (given to me on my last day of term) and it’s looking like I have two year 8 classes and two year 9 classes, full time and a year 10 class and a year 11 class, once a week. Plus I have 3 classes of drama once a week which I’m really pleased about. It’ll keep my hand in and I’ll get to experience other departments.

Our veg is also coming on really well. We grew a massive courgette which was a surprise as I thought they’d all died! I’ve already planned for next year and bought seeds so I’m excited to start afresh.

Surprise Courgette

I don’t think there’s anything left to report except perhaps that I’ve decided that this will be my last post. I’ve completed my PGCE journey which is what I set out to do and now I’m a professional, so I don’t think it’s right to blog about my experiences anymore. No doubt I will still be writing about it, just not in the public sphere. Thank you so much to those of you who’ve gone on this journey with me. To my friends and family who’ve supported me through this time which has undoubtedly been the most difficult yet and for those of you reading who’re thinking of going into teaching, I would say this to you. You must want it. You must have determination and resilience. There’s a reason that the drop out rate is so high – it’s really hard, but then you know that. What I will say is that none of it seems to matter when a kid knocks on your door to ask for your help with a word game he’s stuck on or the feeling you get when in your goodbye card they write ‘Adventure is out there!’ because you’ve taught them a topic on ‘Action Adventure’ or in creative writing when I kid beams at you to tell you he’s discovered a new word – ‘PONG!’ … and with that so ends this blog.

For the last time,

TTFN X

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The First (short) Week Back.

On Monday I woke up and got lots of housework done. I’d taken down the tree and all the decorations the previous day. I don’t much like having them up after New Year and take them down as soon as possible. I also got some assignment and job application done.

Over the next week I planned to work on lessons during the day, during my free periods and work on my assignment in the evenings and weekend. I’d also found a job to apply for which was nearly done – it just needed cutting down.

Tuesday was quite a relaxed day as I had two free periods and a meeting – so only two lessons to observe, nevertheless I felt anxious. I used the time to print what I had to do and go over my two lessons for the next day. I also planned what I was going to do when in my free periods.

After school in my meeting my timetable was edited to give me some more free time which has made me feel a little bit better. I’m closer to teaching 50% now than I thought.

During Wednesday I was due to deliver two lessons but the drama teacher was ill and had set written cover work so I actually had quite a lot of time to do planning. I delivered a year 10 lesson which went fairly well and progressed a lot with my work. I have had an awful lot of email to attend to and admin to do which means I finished late but I felt less anxious afterwards and hope I can stay afloat till the evening.

On Thursday, like Wednesday, I delivered two lessons. I actually really enjoyed them and anxiety was kept to a minimum. I also felt like people at school responded to me better. A good day.

On Friday I was back at uni, which was nice. We had a conference on assessment which could have been really dull but we had some excellent speakers. I also managed to get a bit of lesson planning done.

Over the weekend I intend to work on my assignment for the most part and get my job application sent off.

TTFN

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Last full week in Uni for a while.

Thankfully this week didn’t go as quickly as the last one however, it is now over and that means on Monday I start my first placement.

It’s strange, it was only on Monday that I found out where my placement’s to be. A ‘good’, according to OFSTED school in Warrington. I was very distracted all day, the sessions were on assessment, as I just wanted to get home and start researching and planning my journey.

The journey should take half an hour and they want me to be in by 8.20 for morning briefing so of cause I plan to arrive by 8 and will be leaving an hour for the trip (traffic) that means setting off at 7 and getting up at 6 but I’ll reduce this when I get more confident with the journey.

On Tuesday we pretty much had a day off which I was thankful for (gosh that seems weeks ago now). We talked about everything and my audit and they checked my filing system etc and where I was with my assignments. I made a good start on the one on Teachers and the Law and have been chipping away at it ever since. Although I’ve been finding it difficult to know how much and what else to write, especially on the 10 mark case studies.

Wednesday we had a lecture on reading & planning a reading lesson which was interesting.

On Thursday there was an overview of the Course assignments. If I’m honest I was pretty distracted that day too as I was building up to a migraine. I now have everything I need but I’m struggling to get everything into line to see the big picture. Right now all I know is that I start my placement on Monday, I have a plan for the first three days (more on that later) and my aim for the first week is to find my feet as quickly as possible and settle in. I think that’s all I can realistically expect.

I really want to get everything together and have some kind of bigger plan – where I know what I need to do and when I need to do it but at the moment everything is in piles and unorganised.

On Friday we were told about what the universities and more specifically the English Department’s expectations of us were which was reassuring if nothing else.

This weekend we are puppy sitting! Lottie, Greg’s sister’s dog is coming to stay and we’re also going to Ormskirk food and drink festival which we went to last year and was fantastic. On Sunday I’m doing a dry run to the school I’m at, just so that I’ve at least done it once before Monday. I’ll have the satnav but just to calm my nerves I think it’s for the best. I also need to iron my shirt again as it’s got a bit rucked in the wardrobe and things like that just – get prepared.

I think you can tell that I’m feeling pretty nervous but the real nerves have only really hit today. The fact that things have happened quite quickly means that I haven’t really had time to get nervous until I’m in the jaws of it, as it were … I think that’s a good thing.

So, the plan for next week thus far is: Monday – admin and observing the English Department, Tuesday – shadowing a year 7 in a variety of subjects and Wednesday – shadowing a year 10, again in a variety of subjects. Thursday and Friday I think will then be planned in conjunction with my Curriculum Mentor. Normally I would be in uni on a Friday but not this week so as to give us the chance to properly settle in. I’m going to miss it.

Wish me Luck.

 

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Preparation is over. Now the real journey starts.

Hey everyone,

I now only have one weekend, one solitary weekend, between me and my PGCE. I’ve been a bit all over the place this past week because it’s been looming and I know a change in the routine I’ve built here since moving in is coming. In some ways I can’t wait and in others I am, quite frankly, shit scared.

I feel a lot better this afternoon as I have completely enrolled this morning. I have my student card (complete with obligatory awful picture) and have been given lots of information.On the back of that I’ve also sorted out my work bag and folder, printed out a map etc and I think I’m all ready. Obviously that bag will be checked and double checked and re-packed numerous times before Monday.

I think I’ve also sorted the parking fiasco which is one of the biggest sources of my anxiety around starting uni. It may seem stupid but there you go. I now have … four or else five parking contingency plans ready to go. I have also signed up to the university’s Car Share Programme in the hopes that I might get some help there too but we shall see.

Today I also went to an SpLD meeting in the university library and signed a lot of paperwork so that’s one less thing to worry about once I start.

Since last I wrote I have also had my four hours of Assistive Technology Training. The software I have been given is Audio Notetaker,Inspiration, Read & write gold. The latter two I had during my undergraduate degree but the Audio Notetaker is completely new. I took lots of notes and felt like I got to grips with things really well. I just hope I don’t forget everything.

I have also recently received my timetable for the next week. In summary:

Monday – Welcome Talk & Subject Sessions

Tuesday – Subject Seminars, Learning Services, Students Union, Student Services

Wednesday – Teachers & the Law, Safeguarding & Child Protection

Thursday – Subject Seminars

Friday – Subject Seminars

To be honest in reading I have done very little. Greg and I went away for a long bank holiday weekend to Derbyshire and so I am still only halfway through ‘The Bell Jar’ which has taken it’s darker twist now and I would say is ‘gripping’ rather than ‘enjoyable’. That being said I finished ‘How to be a brilliant Trainee Teacher’ by Trevor Wright in a week and so was planning on starting ‘Getting the Buggers to Behave’ by Sue Cowley but haven’t managed it yet and to be honest, I don’t think I will manage to get it started before I begin on Monday. Once I get into the swing of things next week and I have a bit more of a handle on my workload and what I can expect then I’ll give it a go.

I guess that all that remains for me to do then is ask for you to wish me luck! Thanks so much for sticking with me thus far for my preparation and the move. I guess now the real reason I started writing starts. Hope you enjoy it.

TTFN X

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My Good Luck Flowers ❤

 

 

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The first time I’m nervous.

So since I last wrote, not a lot has changed with the house. I’ve been busy chipping away at organisational jobs and generally settling in. There are still a lot of boxes.

One thing I have done is had my ID checks made and had my DBS application sent off, as a result of this I received a letter in the post and it was the first time I felt truly nervous. It contained a leaflet called ‘Getting Started’ and contained a lot of important information about things to do before September. It’s not a scared nervous really more an excited nervous but nervous none the less. There were also some web links provided which I thoroughly explored and got Greg to print off for me at work as I haven’t yet had chance to get my equipment needs sorted out yet through the DSA … yet another thing on my ‘to do’ list. Nothing on there was surprising really, just mainly confirming information I already knew and refreshing my memory.

Somethings I found out were … that I’ll have 12 weeks of study on campus and 26 weeks on placement in schools. I found out what my modules are and what they entail

  • Developing Subject Knowledge and Pedagogy in English
  • Planning for Effective Teaching and Learning in English
  • Research and Practice in English
  • Practiced based modules 1a, 1b and 2

The first three weeks I’ll be in University Monday-Friday, then I’ll have a week induction on placement and then I’ll be on placement up until December and be in Uni every Friday  (taking on the placement’s term holidays). After that I’ll have on ‘Research Support Week’ before breaking up for Christmas.

In the new year I’ll be back on placement all week except Fridays until the end of February, when I have two weeks in Uni, but when I return to placement in March I’ll be school based full time. Finally, this time next year (scary!) I’ll have two final weeks in Uni preparing me for NQT.

There were also a further couple of books I found to read. I’ve added these to my amazon wishlist but only bought one as, currently, funds are low and I want to cut down on jobs in the house before I try and tackle some academia again. Right now I still feel like I’m recovering from work and catching up on sleep.

Going to go chill out with my boy now,

TTFN.

 

 

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Pre-Course Information!

What a day! So after an impromtue evening out for Mother’s Day on Sunday I came home to an email sitting in my inbox.

PGCE Secondary Pre-Course Information – NOW AVAILABLE‏!

Being a glass or two glasses of wine down I only skimmed the email to get a gist of the contents and duly forwarded it to my work email for printing this morning. I got to work early and printed all the documents, I even managed to read and highlight them all in and amongst work, students and classes.

The first thing to do was fill out some forms and email them to my course tutor which I’ve done this evening. I then found out the timetable of what’s to come.

  • Friday 2nd September – Enrolment
  • Monday 5th September – Programme commences (8.30 for 9.00 am start)
  •  26th September – 30th September – Induction week
  • 26th September – 13th October – Professional Practice 1
  • 3rd October – 8th December (Monday-Thursday) – Phase 1A Placement (a gradual move from observation to planning and teaching)
  • 3rd January – 23rd February  (Monday-Thursday) –Phase 1B Placement (developing competence in planning, teaching and assessment)
  • 13th March and 31st March – Professional Practice 2
  • 13th March – 17th March – Induction and Preparation
  • 20th March – 23rd June – Practice 2 Placement (consolidating competence and addressing areas in which to excel)
  • 26th June – 7th July – NQT preparation period
  • 7th July – End of Programme

So that’s what you’ve got to look forward to! :p

Now, here’s a list of the things I either need to do or have done. Having written it, I now realise that I need to prioritise it. I’m not convinced that even between now and September, with having a full time job and moving house that I’ll be able to have it all done so I’ve colour coded it Green – must do, Amber – do if possible and Red – do if I’ve done everything else because either I’ve already done it once, it won’t take too long or I can do it ‘on the job’.

  • Professional Skills Tests DONE!!! 😀
  • Visit a local Secondary School – I work there.
  • Conduct an audit and draw up an action plan to address an area of weakness. If you remember I was concerned about starting because I wasn’t sure if I was going to have to do in ‘en-course’ but it sounds like they want me to make a start so after I’ve finished ‘Teaching English: Developing as a Reflective Secondary Teacher’ I’ll make a start on that.
  • Begin to address subject specific work suggestions, now, when I received my interview feedback, the only thing they specified that I needed to work on was “Candidate is continuing to develop her Language Subject Knowledge. We would recommend that you also spend time looking at how teachers break down aspects of grammar for teaching at KS3 in preparation for your own teaching.” So that’s something I need to begin to address. My dyslexia is always going to be there which puts me at a disadvantage when it comes to spelling, punctuation and grammar and there can be no excuses for that but it’s certainly something that I will always have to  work at improving. I think that this will tie in nicely to the Audit and the action plan to address an area of weakness  though (see above) which makes me feel like it’s a bit more manageable: addressing four jobs on one.
  • General course reading, which I feel like I’ve made a good start on with ‘Teaching English …’, the revision guides and the exam syllabus that I researched for my interview but I’ll revisit them if I have time and also read some more general children’s literature and literature on the curriculum including Shakespeare. Having done an English Literature degree I feel that I’m pretty well up on Shakespeare and literature in general. I also took a British Children’s Literature module so some of the texts they suggested I’ve already read some of which I haven’t.
  • Familiarise myself with the Teaching Standards and the National Curriculum I learnt these for interview.
  • Sign up for ‘useful websites’ such as: Sec ed; Ofsted; The Times Educational Supplement (I even looked into subscribing but I couldn’t believe how much it was going to cost!) and The Guardian. They’ve asked me to keep abreast of current developments which I certainly did for my interview but I really don’t have the time or money to be buying these every week so I’m hoping that with all the other prep I’m doing and working in a school will keep me as up to date as is needed.

I have a lot to do. First things first. I’ll finish reading ‘Teaching English: Developing as a Reflective Secondary Teacher’ because I only have two chapters left and then I’ll make a start on my skills audit. Let’s see how that goes for now.

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