Week 1 - School Placement 1
This week's tasks:
Classroom management resource
Resources for differentiation x2
IFD for next week's lessons
Walked up to the shop this morning to get some sustenance for the day. Just as well, because I had a brainwave for my classroom management resource whilst out walking (a 'house points' system for the class) - nothing like some fresh air to get the creative juices going!
I had a look on Pinterest for similar resources, to get some extra inspiration, and spent most of the day working on it. Definitely my favourite assignment so far of the whole Masters! It's not quite finished yet - with shops closed at the moment I had to order some of the craft bits online, so fingers crossed they get here before Friday's submission deadline...
This evening I updated my diary with all the submission dates for this placement and looked over all the templates / instructions for the next few weeks. We've a Q&A webinar tomorrow, so I have my list of questions ready to go now. Wrapped up work for the day around 8:30pm!
Spent most of today working one of the differentiation resources. There's not as much ideas online as there are for classroom management, so I had to tighten the thinking cap a bit! I found plenty of info on general best practices for differentiation, but I needed an idea that was both a physical resource and suited to my specific lesson. I came across this document from the PDST which I found really useful - I even decided to adopt their idea 'Think-tac-toe' for my resource.
In the evening we had a Q&A webinar about placement. The chat box was going non-stop with questions and there's a lot to take in, but I'm just going to keep taking it task-by-task!
Woke up this morning deciding that my 'Think-tac-toe' wasn't a differentiation resource, and was actually differentiating by activity. So it was back to the drawing board...
I wanted to avoid thinking about the differentiation resources, because I felt I was tying myself up in knots over them! So I spent the afternoon doing the write-up on my 'house points' classroom management system. I'm really happy with it and am excited to properly test it out at some point in a classroom!
I started researching differentiation resources again, and came across writing checklists. These definitely fit the brief, and they're a really nice idea as well! I've decided that the lesson will be an English creative writing lesson, so I made three different checklists for varying levels of abilities.
I'd started thinking about the second resource, likely some sort of word bank or sentence stems for an EAL child, when I got a reply from one of my lectures that has sent my full-circle back to my 'Think-tac-toe' board! They said that there's thin line between resource and activity, and that it'd be a resource used to give the children choice regarding the activity.
I'm still slightly iffy about it, because of that aforementioned 'thin line', but I think if I do my write up on it properly it should be OK!
Finished my resources and got stuck into the write-ups today. They took longer than expected, particularly explaining my decisions regarding the differentiation resources. Some of the questions on the document were a bit repetitive so took a bit of time to plan out an few different answers that would essentially answer the same thing!
Submitted all three of my resources before the 3pm deadline - pretty happy with how they've turned out, so interested to find out what my inspector thinks. I also submitted the observation report, which was pretty tedious going. Essentially had to answer lots of questions about the imaginary class I was going to be teaching, and the imaginary school it's in...The report's not due until Sunday, but I'm glad to have it done with so I can move onto more important tasks.
Started to plot out my lesson ideas for the next three weeks. Don't want to use up an idea next week that would be better for one of the other weeks! Very roughly drafted two non-core plans, was able to loosely adapt them from some plans I made for a previous assignment so it definitely sped up the process having something to work off.
Chill out evening in store for tonight!
Did a bit of work on the IFD, but had a work-free day for the most part. The IFD is seeming like a daunting task because I'm worried about submitting it and then regretting my decisions when it comes to writing up the lessons next week. I'm also not really sure about how you plan a week of English lessons, so I feel a bit like I'm guessing...will tackle it properly tomorrow.
Cracked the IFD today and happy with how it turned out! Literally printed out all of the college's sample ones, and managed to eventually make sense of it all. I think I'll be quicker at it next week...I hope! Decided to go with a 'Rainforest' theme for next week's lessons, and found it easy enough to tie it into all the subjects, albeit somewhat tenuously with Maths! They always say though that Maths doesn't always fit in with the theme. Was a relaxed enough day, took the afternoon to watch the 6 Nations. Back to the grind tomorrow!