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    (Original post by Airfairy)
    Does anyone have another trainee at their school in their department? We have eight trainees at my school, but we are all in different subjects, however my subject mentor told me we are getting someone else in my subject. I don't know how common it is, but it has annoyed me. My mentor only has two frees a week and I struggle to catch her for feedback as it is, without having another trainee to balance that with. I also feel that it will make things competitive.
    I had another trainee from a different institution in the same department, and it was really nice to have someone else to compare experiences with and bounce ideas off of. Plus, it meant you didn't feel like the only new person in an established department, which was nice (and you could ***** about any classes you both taught XD). However, we had different mentors and I think it would have been difficult for us both to have shared one (even though my mentor was useless, at least I knew she wasn't spending all her time helping the other trainee...). Of course the school then interviewed each of us for the same job, but we continued getting on throughout and even helped one another with the application letter etc.

    Being on my own in my department now, I'd say it was a real advantage to have someone at the same stage as me to talk over my experiences with.
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    I felt like I was reading my own diary when reading some of these comments.

    I've lost a lot of my confidence during these past few weeks.

    My mentor wrote some informal obs notes for my lessons and she had a page full of everything I did wrong - she didn't even mention one thing I did right, then she started to pick grammar issues out of my PowePoint. My last mentor, gave me the good then things I could improve on a lot of constructive criticism.

    She also gave me 3 classes worth of books to mark for her - I felt like a piece of the furniture the way I'm being given these tasks, when I offered a suggestion for one of the lessons the HOD was teaching as a plenary to save her time, she said, can you close my PowerPoint - and went red in the face.

    I feel so lost in this school, PCM is sooo weird - was walking down the corridor the other day and he looked at me and switched directions, literally ran! He smiles at all the other staff but not me - before someone says it's in my head - it's not, he was smiling at my mentor and I was standing right next to her, I smiled (I'm generally a smiley person anyway) and he refused to acknowledge my existence.

    The kids are actually fine, not a problem, but it's the staff that are putting me off. I am seriously questioning continuing with this although I only have 9 weeks left.. *sighs*

    ^^ Sound like a right moaner lol - sorry needed a place to vent, don't feel like anyone understands.
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    (Original post by Sam89)
    I felt like I was reading my own diary when reading some of these comments.

    I've lost a lot of my confidence during these past few weeks.

    My mentor wrote some informal obs notes for my lessons and she had a page full of everything I did wrong - she didn't even mention one thing I did right, then she started to pick grammar issues out of my PowePoint. My last mentor, gave me the good then things I could improve on a lot of constructive criticism.

    She also gave me 3 classes worth of books to mark for her - I felt like a piece of the furniture the way I'm being given these tasks, when I offered a suggestion for one of the lessons the HOD was teaching as a plenary to save her time, she said, can you close my PowerPoint - and went red in the face.

    I feel so lost in this school, PCM is sooo weird - was walking down the corridor the other day and he looked at me and switched directions, literally ran! He smiles at all the other staff but not me - before someone says it's in my head - it's not, he was smiling at my mentor and I was standing right next to her, I smiled (I'm generally a smiley person anyway) and he refused to acknowledge my existence.

    The kids are actually fine, not a problem, but it's the staff that are putting me off. I am seriously questioning continuing with this although I only have 9 weeks left.. *sighs*

    ^^ Sound like a right moaner lol - sorry needed a place to vent, don't feel like anyone understands.
    I think most people know how that feels. Mentors are a very mixed bag. Some are very supportive and very helpful. While others are not! They seem to think you are a free assistant and a way to boost their own ego by putting you down (if they don't like you). Although it must be said there are more of tbe latter than the latter.

    Have you tried speaking to your University about it? I fell out with my mentor on one of my placements. They other trainee with me she loved and me... well she didn't like me from the start. I don't know why. I think because unlike the other trainee I was very different to her personality wise.
    ...Anyway, one Friday evening it became too much and I phone the lecturer in charge of the placements saying it was too much and I didn't think I could keep doing this. He was very nice and helpful. Firstly he gave me some advice to deal with the situation and arranged a 'Supportive Visit'. It was useful and summed it up. It was no where near a good lesson at all! However the lady who came in to visit from the Uni (I had never met her before), gave was kind and said it wasn't the best but it was OK. She said I would be fine. She gave me great advice and said if I just cut down the time of my introduction at the start the rest would fall into place.

    It completely summed it up when she asked to see my lesson plan because it was with my mentor. I was feeling happy and confident (for the first time in ages), saw my mentor who chucked the lesson plan at me and said "that was a disaster, wasn't it?"!!! I didn't see her for 2 days after that.
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    (Original post by Sportycb)
    I think most people know how that feels. Mentors are a very mixed bag. Some are very supportive and very helpful. While others are not! They seem to think you are a free assistant and a way to boost their own ego by putting you down (if they don't like you). Although it must be said there are more of tbe latter than the latter.

    Have you tried speaking to your University about it? I fell out with my mentor on one of my placements. They other trainee with me she loved and me... well she didn't like me from the start. I don't know why. I think because unlike the other trainee I was very different to her personality wise.
    ...Anyway, one Friday evening it became too much and I phone the lecturer in charge of the placements saying it was too much and I didn't think I could keep doing this. He was very nice and helpful. Firstly he gave me some advice to deal with the situation and arranged a 'Supportive Visit'. It was useful and summed it up. It was no where near a good lesson at all! However the lady who came in to visit from the Uni (I had never met her before), gave was kind and said it wasn't the best but it was OK. She said I would be fine. She gave me great advice and said if I just cut down the time of my introduction at the start the rest would fall into place.

    It completely summed it up when she asked to see my lesson plan because it was with my mentor. I was feeling happy and confident (for the first time in ages), saw my mentor who chucked the lesson plan at me and said "that was a disaster, wasn't it?"!!! I didn't see her for 2 days after that.
    Wow - what a bitter moo!

    I will stick it out for a while, and then if it seems to be too overwhelming may call him and tell him the situation.

    My last placement my mentor was okay she had a lot on her plate because she was also head of 6th form but she made time to give me constructive feedback, I felt confident in my teaching as time went by.. I guess as someone previously said mentors aren't always the best people for the job. I know someone else on my course who's mentor has given them 6 hours of teaching because he wants them to take their time and also paid for them to go to a voice coach to project voice better and have one to one lessons with the drama teacher for better body language! I'm not expecting that but that is the definition of supportive!

    He's obviously found areas the trainee teacher could improve in and not only suggested ways to improve but also provided him with the resources to do it.

    Again, I know that expecting the world to be fair is a rather naive attitude but surely they must have been in our shoes once upon a time - since when has "that was pure garbage" ever helped shape a good teacher.
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    (Original post by Sam89)

    Again, I know that expecting the world to be fair is a rather naive attitude but surely they must have been in our shoes once upon a time - since when has "that was pure garbage" ever helped shape a good teacher.
    Very rarely, and it is a massive shame that some mentors (and I speak as someone who has been one for 2 universities) seem to completely forget that the same principles they use in the classroom apply just the same to teaching new teachers.
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    So my rule for weekends is not to work on friday evenings or all day saturday so that my husband and i can spend quality time together and i can have a wind down (I used to suffer from anxiety so need to have a break to make sure it doesnt kick back in) but ive just spent today dwelling on how much i have to do tomorrow, god i cant wait for easter and a break, i just feel like ive been pulled in every direction :/
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    Me too. I've been working most of the day today and have an essay to do tomorrow. I'm just on auto-pilot now to get through this thing. I'm not even phased by my bad classes now as I have switched off emotionally and know I won't have to see them again next year.
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    (Original post by bonniex123)
    Me too. I've been working most of the day today and have an essay to do tomorrow. I'm just on auto-pilot now to get through this thing. I'm not even phased by my bad classes now as I have switched off emotionally and know I won't have to see them again next year.
    I wish i could, I still sob after all of my poor lessons. My husband and I have been holding off trying for a baby because he doesnt want it to effect my career but i had one of the teachers the other day tell me just to start trying before life gets too stressful and we just arent able any more
    I knew how hard this would be but jeez im still an emotional wreck all the time
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    I'm so sorry that everyone seems like they're having such a rubbish second placement... weirdly, mine's been the other way round. Hated most of placement one and dreaded going to school every day.

    For those of you struggling, USE YOUR TUTORS! I hope that you've all got supportive professional/curriculum tutors - get in contact with them!
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    (Original post by Samus2)
    I'm so sorry that everyone seems like they're having such a rubbish second placement... weirdly, mine's been the other way round. Hated most of placement one and dreaded going to school every day.

    For those of you struggling, USE YOUR TUTORS! I hope that you've all got supportive professional/curriculum tutors - get in contact with them!
    That's my plan on Monday.

    I'm currently on a hot tub girls weekend with my high school friends so I think that's definitely helping to calm me down a little. Had a really rough time last week... I felt like I just couldn't do anything right and I still struggle with targeting my lessons at the appropriate levels
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    (Original post by ParadoxSocks)
    That's my plan on Monday.

    I'm currently on a hot tub girls weekend with my high school friends so I think that's definitely helping to calm me down a little. Had a really rough time last week... I felt like I just couldn't do anything right and I still struggle with targeting my lessons at the appropriate levels
    That probably also comes down partly to the transition between schools. A lot of my peers (and myself!) are struggling atm because we don't know the pupils very well and we're all still not really too sure what level to be pitching work to.
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    Not sure whether it helps at all, but I found that my mentors all quite supportive whenever I was super critical of my own practices.

    It's almost as if the sheer fact that I'd always start listing out 5+ faults about my practice throws them completely off, and they feel compelled to put things into balance by offering the alternative perspective. Granted, my mentor was already super supportive, but I often wondered whether my behaviour would have somehow influenced her to become more cautious with what she said?

    How do people think their mentor would react to this sort of thing?

    Secondary school seems really tough.
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    What kind of questions would you ask at an NQT pool interview? :/
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    (Original post by Striving92)
    What kind of questions would you ask at an NQT pool interview? :/
    Similar things to a normal interview only without the school specifics- about assessment, send, safeguarding, how you deliver curriculum...

    Xxx

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    Thanks for all those who commented on additional trainees at their school. I never really looked at it from the angle that it is another person to bounce ideas off, so that has made me less annoyed. I just hope I still get the right amount of support. My mentor doesn't seem neglectful, but she only has two frees a week as it is. We shall see!
    (Original post by Carnationlilyrose)
    Very rarely, and it is a massive shame that some mentors (and I speak as someone who has been one for 2 universities) seem to completely forget that the same principles they use in the classroom apply just the same to teaching new teachers.
    This is something that has annoyed me from the start. We have lectures on the use of praise - its importance and how to use it effectively. Yet in teaching, it seems that I only get criticism and no praise. We would never be expected to mark a pupil's work with 100% criticism. At my school we give two WWWs and one EBI. Whereas I seem to get fifteen EBIs and no WWW. I can appreciate criticism because I like to build on it, but I find that it needs to be nicely balanced out by pointing out my strengths. All this constant criticism without praise is leaving me drained and frustrated.
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    (Original post by Airfairy)
    This is something that has annoyed me from the start. We have lectures on the use of praise - its importance and how to use it effectively. Yet in teaching, it seems that I only get criticism and no praise. We would never be expected to mark a pupil's work with 100% criticism. At my school we give two WWWs and one EBI. Whereas I seem to get fifteen EBIs and no WWW. I can appreciate criticism because I like to build on it, but I find that it needs to be nicely balanced out by pointing out my strengths. All this constant criticism without praise is leaving me drained and frustrated.
    Quite. And wait until you get a job and have to endure INSET days which consist of nothing but being lectured for an entire day by people who are otherwise espousing variety and active learning in lessons. It's a hypocritical profession, at times.
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    (Original post by Carnationlilyrose)
    Quite. And wait until you get a job and have to endure INSET days which consist of nothing but being lectured for an entire day by people who are otherwise espousing variety and active learning in lessons. It's a hypocritical profession, at times.
    I've fixed that for you
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    (Original post by rachel.h)
    I've fixed that for you
    It was a last minute addition anyway...
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    I can definitely relate to those saying they feel a little switched off from things now. I think it's a combination of being in a new environment where I have no attachment to my classes and knowing that my NQT year will be at a school so different to this one that very little will be transferable (high-achieving, all-boys grammar vs low-achievement all-girls comprehensive that's going bankrupt and has given me a tonne of bottom sets). On the plus side, I've definitely worked out that it's high-ability teaching I enjoy and get something out of, which should be useful later on in my career. Hopefully, as I develop more of a relationship with my classes, I'll feel more engaged in the teaching, too.

    I can also massively relate with the things about unsupportive mentors. At my first placement I had a mentor who usually wandered in and out of her lessons that I was teaching and rarely gave any feedback; when it was given it was just a list of criticisms, many of which contradicted what everyone else was saying... Combining that with not turning up to mentor meetings, not responding to my university tutor's e-mails trying to arrange to observe me and an entire lack of awareness regarding anything that should be being done on the course made for a pretty unfulfilling relationship. The key was to find other people to talk things through with that were supportive - I found that NQTs were often best for this, so try to find one you would like to model your teaching after and make an effort to talk with them.
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    My mentor is really nice and supportive but he is so stressed and busy all the time we haven't really done things properly - I'm his first trainee and we've both been slack with paper work and stuff - I'm wondering how finely they go through it at verification? For example, I have quite a few lessons without plans, no evaluations etc.

    I don't have any teachers watching me now in my lessons except for observations so that's partly why I don't feel as emotional after a bad lesson - I felt a lot of it was humiliation that the class teacher witnessed such atrocities.
 
 
 
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