It’s been a while I know, mostly because I’ve been staggered by the workload associated with the teacher training course. Such a staggering workload in fact that I’ve decided to drop out for the time being and get some more experience in the classroom as a teaching assistant before hopefully reapplying for a more local PGCE course next year.
Why? Frankly I was completely unprepared for the course. I had problems with time management (I’m not quite sure how, but I’ve managed to get through life so far without worrying over much about time management beyond knowing that my wife keeps the authoritative version of our diary), paperwork (everything’s on my wiki, why do I need to print it out?) and in managing to frame my lessons in terms that all the kids could understand (this last had implications for behaviour management: kids who don’t understand get bored, and bored kids cause trouble. For the life of me I still can’t understand why the year 7 bottom set were so well behaved; I managed to bamboozle them in almost every lesson).
I hope that getting some experience working as a teaching assistant will give me a slightly more gentle introduction to the art of time management, and also give me plenty of opportunity to see how experienced teachers explain mathematical ideas to children. I found that, because I was trying to explain topics that had never given me problems I wasn’t able to anticipate where the kids were having problems; observing more lessons, and working one to one with kids, should help with that.