At the start of my Field Observation I was prepared to an extent as I have done these as well as internships in the past, however with each experience being so unique and rewarding in its own way I was still a bit apprehensive.
Having the opportunity to not only get to know the children but learn from different teachers and their style of teaching is always exciting in my eyes. However, my mind was quickly put at ease as the bond between the kids and I was immediate and undeniable. After leaving that first day I already felt indisputably better and stress free.
Walking in the following day I was greeted at the door by smiling faces and a swarm of hugs. Everything ran smoothly, with the exception of a few expected hiccups that usually occur with small children, and that one hug at the beginning and of the day as well as positive reinforcement throughout the day was for some the contact that was needed in order to keep them focused and on task when it was otherwise near impossible.
However with that being said, this is often not allowed in schools and is one of the reasons I appreciated visiting a daycare in order to weigh my options for after college. In my previous experience at KidStart children were no longer allowed to hug, sit with teachers during class or show any ounce of affection without being ridiculed. These kids are still babies in my eyes, my youngest student there was three, the same age as my niece, and to tell them that they can’t do so much as hug is simply confusing to them and unnecessary.
In addition to this difference, I also found myself learning more about my own learning as well as teaching style through the experience. While I do need hands on I also prefer to be shown previous to trying the skill. I also am a visual learner and picture the story as I go, however do so more efficiently if I read in my head as opposed to outloud.
My learning style is also more repetitive, I need to read the information and then do so again and again until it clicks. However I don’t necessarily think this will cause me to teach this way. While the styles that had previously solely affected our personal learning often also relate to how we chose to teach our class as well, I think that there should be a happy medium between each method.
Each student clearly learns in a different way, and after working with a variety of children and age groups, that was even more evident. While some flourished under minimal supervision and prefer to complete their assignments on their own, others need a little more guidance. For me personally, I intend to try my best to accommodate for each child to the best of my ability, as I know how hard it can be to try to learn, especially as a more shy student.
Similar to developing a better understanding of my personal learning style I also was able to grasp a better concept of how I would like to teach students as well as run a classroom. One of the major things that came up during my observation were the rules put in place of the children and while I do think that it is important to have rules and follow through with them, they should not be done without an explanation.
For if you simply reprimand a child without informing them of why, they will not only be confused but more likely to do so again. This allows for a mutual understanding between teacher and student and therefore builds a level of respect and trust. I believe that it is important to not act on impulse without analyzing the situation and trying to understand why the act of defiance is taking place.
I also feel that it is important to allow children to voice their thoughts and ask questions related to the topic, however, with that being said, they should be mindful and do so by raising their hand and not simply speaking out. There is a fine line between interrupting versus adding to the lesson.
Being the intern or sitting in as someone new to the class I often feel that I am unable to tell a student they can or can not do something, as it is not my classroom. I hope that as time progresses I am able to voice my thoughts as I want my students to be comfortable to do as well. I think that as teachers it is our job to leave an impact, we are all so blessed to be able to be apart of their lives especially at such a curital age.
For me, my elementary years were less than enjoyable and having a teacher who took the time to show that they cared and were there made all the difference. I never want to take these opportunities to learn from experienced teachers or to get to know each child individually for granted and certainly never forget just how important this time together is.