Today the class had their specialist subjects which were art and drama. Art was alright, nothing that I could really jump in and participate in so I roved around the classroom and asked students about their work. Drama on the other hand was much better. In drama the students had time to practice a short scene that they had been working on the past two weeks before they preformed them today. The prompt was that some form of transport had broken down and it had to include people of different social standards. While they practised I wandered around the classroom and asked them questions about what they were doing. It was the presentations that made the class amazing though. All the students had chosen to incorporate humour into their scene and they were all genuinely funny.
Then I got to try my first bit of teaching! I took a small group of six students, equal numbers of boys and girls. When I was first told that I could take a small group for English the suggestions were that I could get them to do a poster or get them to play a relevant game on the internet. I was originally going to do a poster before the idea struck me while I was driving to the school yesterday to make a game of who wants to be a millionaire. I will post the game up here on my blog so that others can view it and maybe use it. I thought that it would be a fun way of learning and it would require me to be up in front of the class rather than just giving the students a task where they can work independently. I gained a lot from being up in front of the class and I have learnt what areas I need to improve on in that respect so I am glad that I chose to do an activity that required that. I learnt that I needed to be more assertive when dealing with the students as they would listen to an instruction for a short while before disregarding it and I would have to tell them again. This was things like being quiet, which was important as my mentor teacher was teaching the other students at the back of the classroom, also not jumping up all the time. So in the end it was a valuable learning experience and a lot of fun!
I had another very positive experience today during lunch which was a wet day timetable. Three of the girls in the connecting classroom to the one that I am in told me that they liked me because I talked to them and joined in the board game they were playing. They said that I was much better than other student teachers and CRTs because of this who they said would say ‘oh no sorry I don’t think that I should’ as if it were not allowed. As teachers we need to have a good relationship with our students but as I have said before in the post where I discuss my opinion on calling teachers by their first names we cannot be a student’s friend. I think that there is a line there and I am careful to keep it in mind. If I chat to the students and join in the game that gains me ‘cool’ points but I can still be viewed as a teacher in my other actions such as how I deal with the class and that means that I will still have the students respect. After all a teacher should not be this great imposing person that students can’t relate to at all.
What are some good ways of managing a class? I would love to hear you opinions, thoughts, words of experience.