Thursday, April 14, 2011

I was going to do a "Tasty Tuesday" post yesterday when I made a peach and passionfruit cobbler.
Then I realized it was Wednesday.
I suppose I could do 'Tasty Thursday" but it doesn't have the same ring.

The other day our literacy tutor posted up a link to this blog, which I have subsequently spent many hours traipsing through- trialing out resources, sites, games, activities... making comics and story books and mind-maps... It's awesome.
And I realise more and more that I think, for now, lower primary is where I'm at. I want to get kids to that fluent reading level. I want to be able to still read stories with them, but to also write stories, too. So, I don't necessarily want Prep kids who don't know their alphabet, but also not year 6 kids who probably know more math than I do.
But the funny thing is, is that it's through our literacy classes that we're learning (very small amounts) about ICT, and how we can use it. We're going to do stuff on digital storytelling/storybooks, multiliteracies, etc. Other subjects have touched on it, sure. Our maths teacher keeps saying: "You can do this or that on an Interactive whiteboard", but funnily, most of us have never used one. Or if we have, it's in a really fundamental, basic way. Like putting text up, or drawing on it like an actual whiteboard.
Lots more education-y rant below...

Our tutors harp on and on about technology, yet it pains me to see how illiterate my numeracy tutor is with her laptop. Lady, it's a Macbook- ever heard of 2 finger scroll??? It'll save you time, promise. That being said, I know a few people in my Cohort who are not much better with computers.
I'm pretty good. But had I not gone through that blog and compiled a whole heap of sites, we wouldn't have anything. And it's not like they're going to give us lessons on this stuff. They bring it up enough and espouse the benefits of incorporating technology into our classrooms, but never let us actually do these things.
I continue to find it hilarious that as future teachers, we are told again and again that we have to make it engaging, and interesting, and hands-on, and social leaning with our students. Don't just get up there and talk at them.
Can anybody guess the shape that 90% of my lessons have? Here is our numeracy teacher at the front of the class, reading from a powerpoint. Every lesson. Here is our literacy teacher at the front of the class, reading from a powerpoint. Occasionally we'll need to 'turn to the person next to you' and discuss something or other, or occasionally in maths we'll get to play with blocks, or something... But overwhelmingly, these people cannot practice what they expect us to practice. What they grade us on practicing.

It's not isolated to IT though, this feeling of not having enough resources, or being ill-prepared to go out and teach next year. Yeah, I have another semester of class - I'll be taking a primary Humanities subject, Primary Science, one about the law/legal implications/expectations around teaching, and one about building a portfolio on our teaching, assessing, and communicating with students, teachers and parents. We also have our 5 weeks of school where we hope like hell that we'll get placed somewhere that will let us actually develop our own lesson plans and will have technology for us to try out and use.
 So for literacy? I'm underprepared. I have some strategies and ideas under my belt, but.. not enough, I don't think. Numeracy? Way underprepared. Ok, I skipped both my classes this week which can't really help, but I had other things on. The problem with numeracy is that I don't know what I'm doing, myself. If I can't add decimals, or work out percentages, or, remember anything, at all, about measurement and volume (I distinctly recall doing volume in year 7 or 8 and refusing to do it because it was too hard and I didn't understand. I have a test where a friend and I just left that section blank. The teacher wrote "You should at least TRY it")... so, if I can't remember how to do these things, and if we're only going to spend 2 lessons on them in my class at Uni - how to teach them, not how to remember to do them... how can I possibly make engaging and interesting lessons for my students? I don't want to have to use the answer key. I don't want to not know an answer if a kid asks me how to do something. I'd love to make real-world problems and have the ability to maybe, actually solve them. But I don't know how to do these things.
Arg. It gets me riled up.
Talking with some girls at Uni the other day, for some reason we got to saying what we liked about one another. One girl said to me:
"I like that you're really passionate".
So, I suppose it's that. I just want to do the best I can, and I don't feel like I'm being given the tools to do that.

1 comment:

  1. :D

    Compliments are fantastic. I try to give one regularly.