I thought this cartoon was funny because it really shows how I felt coming into this whole experience. I was very nervous, anxious, and not as confident with the students. I feel that this experience has really given me the ability to juggle many different roles in the classroom and act on my feet. I don’t feel that I’m “pretending” to know what I’m doing anymore, which is a nice feeling. The team at the middle school that I have been working with is extremely supportive and all offer their own advice, as well. It is nice because when they talk about younger teachers or student teachers, they often mention that they forget that I am also “new at this” because I am so comfortable and have discipline and control. It is really reassuring and motivating to hear these things. This week begins my transition into co-teaching with my CT and ending my full-time teaching and planning. I am in a phase where I really am just reflecting on what I have done thus far, working on organization of materials for my final, etc. I graded my 2nd Student Growth Through Writing Assignment and am collecting the data on that as well.
One of the things that I have been working on is getting my 4th period engaged in the lecture. I have been focusing on current events more, which they seem to really enjoy. I also have tried to create more games and interactive activities that they would especially respond to. I think that most of them are doing better, but I was slightly concerned because my CT took them out of class recently to do SOL review games that she created with them while I did a current events activity with the rest of the class and the students my CT pulled out were really struggling with the material. She and I were both a little frustrated because we’ve been really trying with them and they don’t seem to be retaining the material. As we finish up the content for the course, my CT suggested that I help her work on a project involving memory strategies for review. I think that’s a great idea and will allow students at different levels to participate.
The other thing I am still thinking about and is fast-approaching is the 3rd student growth through writing assignment. I am hoping to give it sometime early next week so that I will have time to grade them and give students feedback while also collecting my own data. I had students come up with their own people and stories in the past 2 assignments and I toyed with the idea of giving them a person this time, but I think I decided to give them topics to talk about and spend more time reviewing the topics rather than giving them a person. Some of my students have really enjoyed these writing assignments and I think part of the reason for that is the creativity, so I don’t want to take that aspect away. I am looking forward to seeing the results once I lay out the data for all 3 assignments.
Overall, I really feel that I have made definite progress and am trying to use the 2 weeks I have left to really explore different things, such as shadowing other teachers, helping my teacher with SOL review and projects, etc. I’m looking forward to this home stretch!