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September 20, 2012 December 13, 2012 Being quicker in response to student comments: I did have to deal with a swearing student, while I froze and had I found that during Johns roleplay workshop, during the to take a moment to make sure I heard the word I thought I did, session where the student would swear at the teacher and I think I took care of the incident well. I dealt with the student the teacher would have to deal with it effectively, I found that privately, asked the student to reflect on what he had done I would freeze and be unable to formulate an appropriate wrong, and then calmly (but firmly) explained why an action like response. I think that part of it is also the lack of experience that would not be tolerated. I learned that I cant always have a with dealing with a lot of classroom issues, and so, I panic a prepared, well-thought out response for every incident, but bit when I am caught off guard. when unexpected occurrences do come up, I am at least calm and able to handle it. Being clearer in my instruction and expectations: Having a lesson plan and putting in detail the steps really This summer, I found that when explaining things, it all helped me in explaining certain items, as well as breaking makes sense in my head, but not necessarily when I explain down parts of my lesson. This is something I can still work on, it. Sometimes, I am unclear or I miss a step in between, and as a couple of my students have commented that instruction so, I wish to improve on this. can be clearer. Decrease amount of over-talking and over-gesturing: I grew to be very comfortable speaking and presenting in front When giving presentations in front of people, I tend to get of a class. I attempted to appear confident and always greeted very nervous. To hide this, I have found myself unconsciously my students. Actual confidence depended on the subject I was over-talking and over-gesturing which can distracting from presenting on; I was more comfortable teaching subjects where the real point that I wish to explain. I had strong background knowledge (e.g. I preferred Language Arts over Math). At times, I think my gesturing helped explain certain concepts, and I do not think I over-did it. Time management and balancing responsibilities: I learned to be flexible in my planning because it was difficult to I can procrastinate, and if I have a project that I prefer determine how long a lesson would go. I always had a lot of working on, I put off all the other ones. planning to do, so I would get into the habit of always working, so I did not end up procrastinating that much. During class, I think that I really need to work on time management during class and knowing when to move on. OVERALL REFLECTION This semester has been both learning and growing processes for me. I feel proud of myself for tackling challenges that scared me and becoming more comfortable in the teaching profession. While I learned many invaluable lessons such as planning, time management, and flexibility, the most important lesson I took from my experience was this: be brave. I have never been confident in my presentation abilities and have always disliked to be the centre of attention in a crowd. In short, I am the quiet kid with self-esteem issues. But, after working with the students and getting to know them, my nervousness disappeared. Suddenly, my self-consciousness didnt matter anymore because the students were having fun and so was I. It was difficult to appear in the middle of the semester because the students were used to an established routine, and I loathed to break that, especially when I was unsure of indiv idual progress, abilities, and what theyve already learned. Despite this, flexibility was also very important because of unexpected events coming up. However, I loved getting to know each student and learning to know their unique personalities. My favourite moments were the ones where the students were excited to share what they had learned. Of course, while my PSI has been very successful, looking back, I think I could have improved in some areas. Continuing to work on my public speaking and presentation is one of the goals that I will continue to refine, but I think that I could have made the LA 7 bell work more engaging for the students. I think some sort of game or activity where they could move around a bit would have been more interesting for them. For LA 5, I would have liked to start each class off with reading a story, even if it doesn't always relate to the rest of the lesson. The students were very engaged whenever they were read a story and they genuinely enjoyed it. As for class management, I think there are times when I could be stricter. I noticed that students got a bit unrulier towards the end of the semester as I got to know them better. I think that as they started to get more comfortable with me, they also started to see me more as a friend rather than an authority figure. I need to work on balancing a certain level of friendliness with authoritativeness. Overall, my semester with my colleagues and students has been an amazing experience, and one that I wont forget. To quote one of my teachers who once said to me in high school, teaching isnt the most glamorous job, but its the most rewarding. After five, exhausting weeks, I could not agree more with what she had said to me . I have been so lucky for this experience that gave me a wide variety of students in different age groups and language capabilities, and allowed me to explore the joys and challenges with each group.