Monday, 13 August 2012

Being prepared to teach..

Courtesy of WildGeeseDigital

I have trained in the past to teach Maths to 11 to 18 year old, which was a riot!

And I have a Diploma in Home Based Childcare - much easier working with 0 to 5 year old!

I have just completed post-16 teacher training, so the only age group I am not qualified for is the 5-11 age range.

Both jobs require the skill of preparing and delivery. It takes time to put together a lesson, all the information you want the learners to understand has be thought through and put into order. This takes time, energy and dedication!

The preparation involved takes time and involves bringing together so many different elements. For maths it was using resources in the classroom to teach concepts that kids are pre-programmed to hate. With under 5's it was developing learning experiences that were fun and inclusive - paint, paper and little clothing being one of their favourites.

Sewing is a whole different ball game. Today as part of my prep for tomorrow's lesson I have completed checked all my paperwork for risk assessments, put together handouts, cut fabric, checked machines, gathered all the sewing equipment I can find (and spares just in case) and triple checked everything... That is in addition to writing a 20 page scheme of work and 6, 15 page lesson plans....

To me preparation is key. Whatever you teach, writing plans and lists for each lesson is key to ensuring that your learners will enjoy their experience and they will learn what you want to.

During my training I have observed loads of lessons that were not planned - I mean NOT planned. Each time the teacher seemed to think their knowledge of the subject was secure enough that they didn't need to plan. They would be able to teach automatically...

It just doesn't work like that. Not planning makes you feel awful - it is like being on a speeding train and knowing you have no control over it. The lesson unfolds and goes in directions that feel uncomfortable.... and the learners sniff a run away train... believe me they do!

So next time you have a class whether it is sewing or math and it is going smoothly, remember that your teacher will not have left anything to chance.  They will have spent hours planning the session to ensure you learn what you need to and have fun...

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