Thursday, September 30, 2004

post micro-teaching reflections

Well, first of all, I must say that I think this will be the smallest class that i would ever teach in my entire life. haha it's like smaller than some tuition classes i would think! nevertheless it was still a good experience for me as i learnt a lot from this 20 mins or so. thanks to all my classmates who made it interesting and to those in cahoots of drawing the picture on the board :p hehe, guess that made it even more memorable for me. think i would actually find it amusing if it did happen to me in a real life senario. but if the picture was offensive or there were obscenities in it, it will have to be dealt with differently. depending on the severity of the 'offence', how repentant the student is, whether the student has committed this act before etc are some factors that we can consider when dealing with this matter.

it's good to know our strengths so that we can then use these strengths to our advantage when we teach. hmm frankly i dont really know what to say for strengths. haha i guess this is where the loud un-demure (hm is there such a word) voice finally comes in handy...ahahaha

Hmm, i was thinking about some of the things that i could improve on. yup, can definitely improve on presentation skills, like not delivering instructions orally. i know that we have talked about it before, but i thought that it was just one extra instruction that i had to add ie. getting the class to think of ways on how they would improve the promotion of singapore. didnt think it could have been missed out since it was just one extra point, but guess now i see the importance of presenting things in print.

the length of time given for the students to look though the worksheet first was overlooked. i knew that i made a 'mistake' when the students ... erm my classmates rather were looking for their pens when the video had already started. this caused some of them to miss the first few blanks that they had to fill in.
while preparing for the lesson, i had a mental picture of what will go on in when i would hand out the worksheets, what to do when i played the video (remembering to turn off the lights) etc. i took into account the time that i would need to play the video. i thought it would be wise to ask someone to help me distribute the worksheets while i started the video so that i would not waste any precious class time. It didnt cross my mind about giving the class a few minutes to look through the worksheet. hehe and i thought they would be ready when i started the video but guess i should have made sure that everyone was ready with a pen etc.

hmm about me being nervous and fidgeting, hee i wasnt nervous so maybe it was just me not being able to keep still. guess might have to look into that if it's distracting for students.

anyway ive been enjoying the micro-teaching so far. think it's really interesting to see the different teaching styles of my classmates and the discussion sessions after that will definitely come in handy. learnt so much in a fun way. hee and though im glad my turn is over, i really enjoyed my class on tues :) ohhh and now i fully comprehend the way that suhkairan felt during his micro-teaching about what pearl said. coz Emmanuel kept saying that the lesson was boring and i can imagine how it would feel like if the teacher took hours to plan for the lesson. i guess rapport with the class is of utmost importance... because hopefully they will listen even if the lesson is boring... of coz we hope that a boring lesson wouldnt happen. yah but at least maybe they'll 'give face' and not sleep or something. hee okie.. thats abt all for now.. thanks ibrahim and angel for observing and handling the video. haha quite excited to see the video actually..

Tuesday, September 28, 2004


Well, thought that I'll post some of my thoughts before my micro-teaching later. I've prepared for the lesson already, or so i think! guess how well the lesson goes will very much depend on classroom management or whether the class decides to be devils or angels. yikes! hm, I'm not too sure if I'm trying to cover too much in one lesson, realised that there can be so many things that can be done. While preparing for the lesson, I tried to ensure that it was not teacher-centred and that the teacher was there mainly to faciliate discussion. Students will be encouraged to think, but this might make it more difficult since they might come up with irrelevant answers or perhaps even extremely intelligent answers that I would have difficulty answering. The worksheets are fairly simple so the class should not have any problems answering the questions which are straightfoward. The worksheet is designed in such a way that the first and second sections are easy to answer while the third section requires more thinking. thought perhaps this is a normal academic class so would be good to give them some confidence when they know the answers. In addition, these will later help in their later activities.

I decided to try use video since Kenneth was hoping someone would use it and I wanted to do something different too. Also, i feel that students will probably be attentive and interested with the use of the video especially with the sounds, pictures etc. The video will be used as a trigger activity for the topic. hee alright, enough said for now. will be back after my micro-teaching :)

Monday, September 20, 2004

well, I must say that my school experience was indeed an enriching one. didn't get the chance to teach Geography but did observe some classes, from Sec 1 to Sec 3 because the sec 4s and 5s were in the midst of some exam or something. the technical stream classes definitely had shorter attention spans but what surprised me was their eagerness to answer questions posed by the teacher. this was especially true of a particular secondary one technical class where i would say at least three quarters of the class raised their hands to answer questions! in another sec 1 techincal class, the teacher used bribes.. hmm or should i say forms of motivations to encourage the class to answer the questions she posed. hmm we often talk about creative learning, thinking of ways to make the lesson interesting etc. however, most of the lessons that i observed were still very much teacher-centred. i was told that pupils in this school were very weak academically and the teachers felt that varying their methods such as the use of videos or role-playing would slow down the lesson and they could not afford the time to do so.

one lesson which i found particularly interesting was a sec one normal stream geo lesson whereby the teacher used powerpoint. the slides were very colourful and had many graphics. the students seemed engaged in this lesson and were very spontaneous in answering questions. the teacher told me that she needed to make the slides attractive as they were a visual stimulant and she did notice a difference when she used powerpoint in contrast to the other methods she used previously.

i was glad to be given the opportunity to teach although it wasnt geo, but i guess the experience will come in useful for geo too. My CT gave me a better class which was relatively easy to handle. Im glad he did because i sat in for one of the sec 3 techinical classes and they were definitely a handfull! gosh, think teaching a class like that would probably drain all my energy for the day. it's like a class full of ibrahims during micro-teaching. *gasps*

ah well, i must say that i definitety learnt a lot from school experience although the condition of the school wasnt exactly great because we were in a holding school. it was a different school culture which i have never encountered before.

Saturday, September 11, 2004

my 2 cents worth on Run' Er :)

phew...nothing else to hand in for the week! for once, can breathe a little more easily. haha i spent like 8 hours at Jurong Pt just now.. talk about getting a life. hee.. alright..blogging time once again...

Hmm basically I think Run’ Er’s lesson went rather well though I felt that she was too nice! She was very accommodating and smiled a lot. In terms of a real setting, she might either get bullied or maybe the students will not take advantage of her since they will feel bad. Guess it really depends on the students. Some things that I think could have been improved on were the instructions given for the designing of the brochures as the class seemed to have numerous questions when she gave the go-ahead to commence with the activity.

Like what was mentioned in class, I think she did a great job in handling the cheeky ideas brought forth by the male group by allowing them to use ‘hotel 81’ in their brochures as long they could justify their reasons. This showed that she was open to ideas and allowed for the group to feel accepted. In the end, they did not even use that initial idea but came up with ‘normal’ attractions such as golf courses, eating places etc. the massage palour would have been alright if sukairan (erm hope I spelt your name correctly) did not make the remark to Felicia.

Often, Run’ Er ignores comments that is made by the class. guess this is good in a sense that she does not allow herself to get distracted and it would be disruptive to the lesson if she has to continually settle every small minute problem between the students.

We can see how students would judge the teacher and even test the teacher to see where one’s threshold is. For instance, when Run’ Er asked Angel to pass her the food, Angel tested Run' Er by not giving in so easily. Run' Er then decided to pursue the matter outside class after the lesson had ended. i guess this is a good method that we can learn from, since it lessens the disruption to the lesson and perhaps we can think of what to say to the student in case we are unsure of how to deal with the issue there and then.. sneaky... hehe

Also, think asking Angel to write all the points on the board probably was not such a good idea as the class was constantly complaining about how messy the board was. hm.. intially i thought that she asked angel to be the official note-taker as she takes down a lot of notes during normal class time. but upon learning that she Angel was the 'chosen one' because it was perceived that she might create trouble, i thought that it might make things worse to have her behind the teacher's back as she might make money faces or somthing..

i think run' er's idea of designing a brocchure is quite a good one as i belive that students often like hands-on work. and this project forces that to brain storm on ideas in a fun and interactive manner. Also, run' er was aware of the time and constantly reminded the class on how much time they had left. one thing that i noticed was that one group finished way ahead of the other groups. i think that we can learn from this because as teachers, we have to acknowledge that even though pupils are streamed, students in class are still of different learning abilities. we must think of how to ensure that the faster students do not feel bored etc.

hmm.. ok, thats all i have to say for the time being! till then