In ECS 100 last semester I was placed in a ½ split classroom. I really enjoyed being in the classroom and being in the school environment. During my time there I got to observe both the teacher and the students. I learned a lot from both. Here are a few samples of my ECS 100 Field blogs:
Week One: I was really nervous about this first day, but that feeling wore off pretty quickly as soon as the school day began. I was focused more on what was going on around me with the students than anything. I even helped out a lot more than I thought I would be able to on my first day. I found it interesting and even inspiring, to watch how the children learnt their lessons and interacted with those around them. I really enjoyed my time there and I look forward to returning. I think I learnt every bit as much as the children did that day, and like them, I have a lot more to learn going forward.
Week Two: This week the grade 1/2 classroom arrived to find a sentence on the projector screen that they had to write in their agenda for their parents to see. The sentence they had to write was, “Today we saw the Buffalo Robe!” The school had Elder Dennis visit with the Winter Count Buffalo Robe. He explained to the students that they used all the parts of the buffalo they hunted and didn’t waste anything, he also explained how a tepee was made and so much more. He held up the Winter Count Buffalo Robe for all the kids to see.
Week 3: I think that teachers honor different ways of knowing by the lessons that they teach and the ways that they teach those lessons. I have seen the teacher promote knowledge in a fun and interactive way for the students. Some of these ways are games that also promote learning, like the games we played with numbers this week. Those games taught the children counting and they had fun doing it. They also had fun and learned while playing the Jeepers Peepers game last week, and the dice game they played this week. I believe that teachers rely on other teachers and school stuff for support. I feel like it is very important for teachers to communicate with each other and ask for help from their coworkers if they do need some support in their teaching career. I also think that teachers can also rely on lessons supports that can be found on the internet. Professional knowledge is learned in the experiences that teachers have and learn from in the classroom.
Week 4: In the classroom and the school, I saw a lot of diversity. Cultural diversity is one of the most noticeable. But it is harder to make out some of the learning diversities that some of the students have. Not every student in the classroom will be able to learn in the same way. Some students might be more effective learners when they are taught with verbal instruction and other students may learn better by visual pictures or images. There are seven different types of learning styles (Visual, Physical, Aural, Verbal, Logical, Social, and Solitary), these suggest that everyone is unique, and all students learn in their own way. In the school, classroom, and from the teachers all students are treated the same way, and they are all included in classroom activities. No one is left to sit out or just watch others do the work, everyone is encouraged to participate in the learning activities.
Week 5: I really enjoyed this week. While the kids were drawing their pictures of what they thought peace looked like, I walked around the room. Some of the children seemed to have trouble thinking of an idea to draw, so I tried to help. I would ask the students what the first thing they could think of was when they hear the word peace. If a student said my bed, then I would suggest they drew themselves in bed. I also went around the room and asked each group of kids what they were drawing. I really enjoyed our conversations about their pictures and hearing all of their stories.
Week 6: The students are being taught about how important it is to follow the rules and to show others kindness and respect. They are also learning about different objects and what groups those objects can be categorized in, what they do, what they are made of, the parts, what does it look like, etc. The students are learning by books, teachers asking them questions, and with little games that are played in the class.
Final Reflection: As a whole I really liked the school environment. I felt comfortable there and enjoyed observing both the teacher and the students. Before the field work, and even before I got into the Education program, I was not quite sure I could be a teacher, as my confidence was not the best. But being in the classroom, being able to help the children and seeing them learn really inspired me. I feel I am even more motivated to become a teacher now and will work hard to make my goal as a teacher a reality. My first day in the classroom I remember I was nervous and unsure of what my role would be. That nervousness quickly went away, the more time I spent in the classroom. My field teacher taught me a lot, as I observed and talked to her, I learnt about ways to deal with students who are misbehaving. One thing that has really stuck with me is when the students are doing something they are not supposed to, the teacher will say, “make a good choice” or “show a good choice.” These sayings make the students think about what they are doing and informs them that what they are doing is not appropriate behavior. By observing the teacher, I also learned what it would be like to be a teacher myself, and how much work it does take. I remember whenever I signed one student’s agenda with my initials AG, he would always get excited and go up to his teacher telling her he got an AG in his agenda. I am going to miss all those little moments that made me smile in the classroom, and the moments I was able to help a student with their work. But I am looking forward to learning more about teaching, so I can teach my own class in the future.