Galo, Ina Austria T.


The Teaching Experience at DFFS “Teachers who inspire realize there will always be rocks in the road ahead of us. They will be stumbling blocks or stepping stones; it all depends on how we use them.” Teaching as what I know before is just telling students what to do and how to do it. It never stumble upon me that it means so much more. Preparing for the demonstration was excruciating! We barely had a week to prepare the lesson plan, the instructional materials, the worksheets and other materials we had to carry along with us to Dagatan Family Farm School. Sir George gave us advice on how to improve our lessons and if our activities would supplement learning. The day had finally come, our first teaching experience at DFFS. At first I was nervous because it was a boys’ school and I didn’t know how to handle this kind of learners. But when me and my partner, Claudine Robledo, taught these kids, I was never the same again. I learned how to discipline children, how to reach out to them, how to ask follow up questions whether they understand the lesson how to ask them to reiterate the instructions given in each activity and how to divert negative behavior into positive ones. The unintended curriculum really spells out that not all things you have planned in your learning module will take place. The unwritten curriculum is created through culture, relationships and interactions. Instead of being a one-time lesson it is an all-the-time action. It will either result into a positive or a negative washback.

I have learned that direct instruction must be coupled with modeling. You are working to create an environment where it is good to make mistakes and question each other. Therefore, you must be open to students correcting you or giving you feedback. Always thank them for it, even when they don't phrase things well. Be open to getting authentic help from the students. For example, if you struggle with spelling, ask them to check your spelling. In addition, never put yourself down by saying things like, "I can't draw" or "I'm bad at spelling." We want to break the norm of students saying, "I'm bad at math," but we cannot ask that of them if we're modeling something else. Instead of putting yourself down, express that things are difficult but that you are confident you can grow: "I'm having trouble making a diagram that looks like a football field - can someone tell me what I need to do here?"

The whole day was very exciting and intriguing. The best part was seeing the students present their own work through role play. It truly was evident how comfortable they felt in their understanding of the subject and the process, even in front of a room full of student teachers. Performance based assessment is definitely something I will include in the classroom. I may now say that teaching is my code, teaching is my life and I want to share my knowledge and experiences to the youth of tomorrow.

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