self-declared art

Sunday, October 30, 2005

blogging in style

Seems that it was only yesterday that I created a blog. Now, everyone has a blog. My lit class has caught on to the blogging craze. Best of all, some of them have been reading our blogs by way of some NIE geog link all this while! How fascinating. I guess we are not the first to write entries about our microteachings in our blogs, even the historians are doing it way before we even got started.

Even aunty evil-lyn has got a blog. ;) How interesting. Her very own online aunt agony site. I think I am going to miss these crazy and fun-loving bunch of people in my geog n lit classes. Such a happening bunch.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

oh no not another microteaching!

Barely recovered from one, now preparing for another. Evelyn and I were sitting down racking our brains for the whole noon/evening before we came up with some ideas for a Lit microteaching coming up really soon.. For the record, these are the end products of our meeting-
Someone is going to be tortured.
Gender roles are being switched.
Someone is going to be PERFECT in role.
Someone is going to be remembered for trying to act cuter and younger than her age.
Perhaps carrying a paperbag with two holes to school would be useful-to hide our faces.

Embarassment aside, it is really cool to work with Evelyn. Just looking at her history lesson plans gives me the wake up call. Superbly detailed and very organized. I think it takes alot of courage to work with someone whose expectations are not the same as my own. It makes me more open and receptive to others' ideas and input. I am going to miss my Lit class. Really people from all works of life, esp one who has a discount on coming to class according to Hermit. Haha. I hope the discount vouchers will expire.
Really hope we put on a great show/act whatever for the microteaching. So nervous...:<

Thursday, October 13, 2005

thoughts on my microteaching..

I think i super buang any angle, I think I had a weak start to the lesson, instructions not clear, language too cheem, info overload, vague pointing and what have you. Sighh..the class should have picked up my nervousness even before the lesson started. It just escalated as more dramatic things happened in class..seriously I am disappointed in my incompetence in conducting an effective lesson. So Wesley, take consolation in the fact that I had a more buang time than you lah. Ha.
Powerpoint slides..
As many of my classmates have pointed out, my slides were distracting and information was a little heavy going..Some have told me they had difficulty focusing on the slides and listening to me at the same time. When I taught the lesson in my one month stint, it turned out pretty okay in the sense that the students could follow through my lesson and the post activity of filling up worksheets prepared by my CT also made it possible to check on their understanding of their concepts..The feedback I got from my CT then was that I had spoken too slowly such that the students were looking perpetually bored in my lesson. I decided to go faster in today's class, but I think I rushed through the slides too quickly.
Using animations was something my CT was very particular about. Being the IT nut that I am, naturally I sought another friend's help. After the short comments in class today, I feel that the animations could be improved furhter. I think there were too many colours showing the processes of the rock cycle, making it confusing for the students..Weaker students would not be able to follow the lesson.
I was not aware that my choice of words were too cheem for the students. I think I can afford to pay more attention to dumping down my language so that everyone can understand what I am saying.
Classroom management
Oh well I guess going last for microteaching is the WORST trauma that any student teacher can face. I'm a living example. Firstly, the microteachings should get better with each passing week, so the onus was on me to perform.but perform, I did not. My level of alertness was clearly not there, as I was not aware that Ken had gone out of class, and Daphne was not at her seat the 2nd time..I only noticed that Lily and Daphne were missing when I saw Lily's empty chair much later in the lesson and then linked it to the "ghost in class" rumours flying about in the class..Actually I found it hard to be fierce with the two culprits hiding in the cabinet because snatching the rock from Daphne's hand in the cabinet caused my fingers to ache with the heavy weight of the rock. I never knew they hid rocks in the cabinet! The pain caused me to momentarily forget to scold the two trouble makers..
Special needs-autism
Chris's acting threw me off completely-I was not in the least prepared..Even though we are all going through a ourse on working with people with special needs in our ed psych class, I have little experience with autistic students. Perhaps not everyone is aware, my sister is intellectually disabled, she is diagnosed with the Cri-du-cat syndrome from birth. It is difficult interacting with my sister because her catlike cries vex me at times and I can go berserk listening to her. This is the main point of contact I have personally with people with special needs.
When confronted with Chris's outburst in class and hysterical behaviour, all that came to mind was the frustration I had when interacting with my sister at home. I think I did not handle the situation well when I bent down to ask if he was alright when he sat next to me on the floor. I was firm, and rather stern with him. Looking at him reminded me of my sister causing me to respond in a less than caring or compassionate way, which I admit I really need more help with. I am thankful for the chance to have this scenario though, in my lesson today because I think this is something that we all may face when we get posted out to schools next year. Would love to hear how my classmates would react in the situation.
Level of alertness
I give myself a rating of 2 out of 10..As mentioned earlier, I was half aware and half not aware of missing members..I think this is something I need to work on very badly because I have never encountered a situation where students suddenly go missing in class-perhaps I have been too lucky.
This is something I wanted to try out on the assumption that I was meeting the Sec 1 class for the first time..I won't use it all the time. Got the idea from my Lit tutor Ms Yee who does her own feedback with us apart from those by NIE to improve on her lessons. I think that i would still give out feedback forms in the real lesson, but not do it in every lesson.
Generally, I think my lesson had been ineffective in almost all the aspects mentioned above..My lesson had been at best, confusing and cluttered with information..My nervousness took over almost throughout the lesson. I am grateful for my one month experience for its almost perfect (read:disciplined and well-behaved)student population-very safe and secure for a freaked out beginner like me. What I think I can do now is to think of how to better manage the class and ensure more effective teaching strategies. As for the extremely rushed pace of the lesson, I think that I have failed in my time management too.