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    (Original post by Keziah)
    Starting my preliminary observation in primary today.

    I really don't feel very sure about what to expect or what I should be doing there for eight whole days, so I'm hoping today I can mostly just observe and take notes to get my head round things a bit more.
    Same here - doing a primary observation this week (5 days only). 2 days to go. extremely bored with it. observed plenty of lessons, really dont need a full week. 2 days would have been plenty.

    As a specialist in maths, watching the numeracy lessons is the most useful, especially year 6, but most the other subject lessons are no use to me. I am just trying to use up the time, even doing some marking for a teacher!
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    (Original post by Jimmy Mullen)
    Same here - doing a primary observation this week (5 days only). 2 days to go. extremely bored with it. observed plenty of lessons, really dont need a full week. 2 days would have been plenty.

    As a specialist in maths, watching the numeracy lessons is the most useful, especially year 6, but most the other subject lessons are no use to me. I am just trying to use up the time, even doing some marking for a teacher!
    To make the most of it watch for things like classroom management, lesson structure, lesson pace (this is way more important than you think), techniques for getting the class' attention, routines. Teaching is so much more than just your subject specialism and I wish I'd realised that when I was observing.
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      (Original post by Jimmy Mullen)
      Same here - doing a primary observation this week (5 days only). 2 days to go. extremely bored with it. observed plenty of lessons, really dont need a full week. 2 days would have been plenty.

      As a specialist in maths, watching the numeracy lessons is the most useful, especially year 6, but most the other subject lessons are no use to me. I am just trying to use up the time, even doing some marking for a teacher!
      Why would most other lessons be of no use to you? Will you not be teaching them too once you have your own class? Or will you be teaching secondary?
      Like Becca said, there are other things to take note of too. Behaviour management being one - getting the class' attention and holding it, making sure they listen carefully, how to deal with those who don't behave and those that do.
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      (Original post by Jimmy Mullen)
      Same here - doing a primary observation this week (5 days only). 2 days to go. extremely bored with it. observed plenty of lessons, really dont need a full week. 2 days would have been plenty.

      As a specialist in maths, watching the numeracy lessons is the most useful, especially year 6, but most the other subject lessons are no use to me. I am just trying to use up the time, even doing some marking for a teacher!
      I'm quite enjoying mine actually.

      I mostly just observed for the first day, but since then have been helping pupils with their work and going round different year groups to see the differences between age groups and how other teachers work.

      Yesterday I went round a numeracy class checking pupils work and answering questions when they had their hands up, and did more or less the same in a History lesson. I also went to a Y4 literacy lesson where I was responsible for supervising a table of higher ability pupils who were doing a different activity to the rest of the class. In afternoon registration, I listened to a pupil read and filled in their reading record. I also attended a staff meeting on phonics and spelling.

      The thing that I'm consistently impressed for is the way teachers differentiate for the different abilities within their classes. Thinking back, I don't ever remember being bored when I was a primary pupil, yet I was bored for pretty much the whole of secondary. So what can we do as secondary teachers to make lessons accessible for low ability and SEN pupils, and still push higher ability pupils?

      I don't think it matters that much what subjects you're observing - surely it's the teaching and the pupils that are important, not the content? I don't think I'll be able to observe a single lesson in my subject during the 8 days, and am mostly focusing on literacy as it's most relevant to MFL, but am definitely getting something out of observing lessons in numeracy and other subjects too, in terms of how the teacher addresses the class, makes their expectations clear, uses rewards and sanctions, differentiates, manages behaviour, etc.

      I'm also hopefully going to teach a short French class tomorrow, as none of the teachers are keen on the idea of doing one whilst being observed by a French graduate!
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      We had our audits in Maths, English and Science today. Glad they're out of the way... at least for now!

      We're going to Carsington Water tomorrow for some outdoor learning. Keep your fingers crossed for dry weather for me!

      Hope everyone's feeling ok so far and not too overwhelmed!!
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      Find out all my placement information on Monday, quite excited, hopefully closer rather than further away really, though they said they try to get you closer to where you live as opposed to miles and miles away. Quite tired merely catching up on subject knowledge so far, lots of reading and taking notes going on so far
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      The thread keeps popping up in my watched thread feed. I won't lie - I am glad my PGCE is over and done with lol, although there were lots of great points/moments [as well as the stress]!

      Good luck everyone just starting. Oh, and make the most of the first few weeks/university based weeks. I found that I didn't have much to do outside of my contact hours at first [contact hours were 9am - 5pm, 5 days a week], so I was able to explore the local area, socialise properly with people on my course and that sort of thing. The contrast to when you are on proper teaching placements is quite stark lol, so it is worth enjoying this settling in period.
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      How is everyone finding the PGCE so far?
      I am really enjoying it and finding it managable so far - however, I don't know how long that will last for!
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      (Original post by Alexamae_)
      How is everyone finding the PGCE so far?
      I am really enjoying it and finding it managable so far - however, I don't know how long that will last for!
      I'm enjoying it but already feel like we've been given quite a bit to do. Definitely need to get myself organised over the weekend, write all the dates and details for my assignments/set tasks. And I'm slightly terrified we start school in 3 weeks!
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      I always get slated by mainly Primary trainees whenever I come on here talking about Primary observations for a Secondary PGCE, but I am not saying anything that is not true!

      No Stray_talk, I am a secondary trainee, so I will never teach History, Literacy etc. I have absolutely no interest in teaching them. The teachers give me something else to do whenever I am present in e.g. a Literacy lesson, as they know it is pointless me being in there, whilst they watch a film!

      Some are saying look for this look for that - yes I know, I have seen many lessons and done this, I was just saying 1 week was too long for this. Some of the days could have been better spent doing something else. I find observing a little bit awkward as I always feel like a spare part and don't want to be a nuisance for teachers, but no doubt it is great to work with the pupils and just see everything.

      One thing that really strikes me is how different Primary is to Secondary. It really is chalk and cheese, and the staff agree. (It was something I said on this site a few months back, but many members wrongly insisted it was almost exactly the same, which of course I ignored.)

      Anyway one day left. The plan for tomorrow is to attend Assembly (the singing is excellent ), Yr3 Maths, then over Yr6 Maths.
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      (Original post by Jimmy Mullen)
      I always get slated by mainly Primary trainees whenever I come on here talking about Primary observations for a Secondary PGCE, but I am not saying anything that is not true!

      No Stray_talk, I am a secondary trainee, so I will never teach History, Literacy etc. I have absolutely no interest in teaching them. The teachers give me something else to do whenever I am present in e.g. a Literacy lesson, as they know it is pointless me being in there, whilst they watch a film!

      Some are saying look for this look for that - yes I know, I have seen many lessons and done this, I was just saying 1 week was too long for this. Some of the days could have been better spent doing something else. I find observing a little bit awkward as I always feel like a spare part and don't want to be a nuisance for teachers, but no doubt it is great to work with the pupils and just see everything.

      One thing that really strikes me is how different Primary is to Secondary. It really is chalk and cheese, and the staff agree. (It was something I said on this site a few months back, but many members wrongly insisted it was almost exactly the same, which of course I ignored.)

      Anyway one day left. The plan for tomorrow is to attend Assembly (the singing is excellent ), Yr3 Maths, then over Yr6 Maths.
      Having worked in both secondary and primary, I don't think it's that different. Chalk and cheese it definitely is not. I use a lot of the skills I learned in secondary in primary and were I to go back to secondary I would take a LOT with me from my primary experience.
      I wish I'd made more of my primary observation during ITT to understand the long view of where kids are coming from. For example as a secondary teacher I made so many assumptions about kids' reading abilities. I've learned so much useful stuff about reading development and numeracy strategies in the past year that is really applicable to secondary.
      Literacy is SUPER-relevant to Maths. What about problems? If you have kids that struggle with reading strategies, how would you teach them to solve problems.
      Fair enough if the class is watching a film, definitely do something more useful, but I wouldn't dismiss observation so offhand.
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        (Original post by Jimmy Mullen)
        I always get slated by mainly Primary trainees whenever I come on here talking about Primary observations for a Secondary PGCE, but I am not saying anything that is not true!

        No Stray_talk, I am a secondary trainee, so I will never teach History, Literacy etc. I have absolutely no interest in teaching them. The teachers give me something else to do whenever I am present in e.g. a Literacy lesson, as they know it is pointless me being in there, whilst they watch a film!

        Some are saying look for this look for that - yes I know, I have seen many lessons and done this, I was just saying 1 week was too long for this. Some of the days could have been better spent doing something else. I find observing a little bit awkward as I always feel like a spare part and don't want to be a nuisance for teachers, but no doubt it is great to work with the pupils and just see everything.

        One thing that really strikes me is how different Primary is to Secondary. It really is chalk and cheese, and the staff agree. (It was something I said on this site a few months back, but many members wrongly insisted it was almost exactly the same, which of course I ignored.)

        Anyway one day left. The plan for tomorrow is to attend Assembly (the singing is excellent ), Yr3 Maths, then over Yr6 Maths.
        No one is slating you but fair enough you're secondary. You're in primary observing for a reason, make the most of it.
        I'd just say don't assume too much.
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        Loving it so far thgh were just covering a lot of theory at the minute and will e for another couple of weeks! looking at different teaching methods and working on some musical activities has been a big part though i must say I am more than keen to get a look at me placement school
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        Starting on Monday and im SOOO nervous! We dont find out our placements til Tuesday and then 6 days later we start on placement school! Its all a bit scary but i think its because I dont know whats happening!

        How are other people who have already started (secondary) pgces finding it?
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        (Original post by ponpon14)
        Starting on Monday and im SOOO nervous! We dont find out our placements til Tuesday and then 6 days later we start on placement school! Its all a bit scary but i think its because I dont know whats happening!

        How are other people who have already started (secondary) pgces finding it?
        Try not to worry. When you start your placements, you'll initially be observing and completing tasks etc. You will build up to teaching.

        I found out about my first placement 1 week before and my second 2 days before. My STCC seemed to like leaving it to be a surprise lol.
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        (Original post by Sarang_assa)
        I'm enjoying it but already feel like we've been given quite a bit to do. Definitely need to get myself organised over the weekend, write all the dates and details for my assignments/set tasks. And I'm slightly terrified we start school in 3 weeks!
        I know, we have been given a generous amount of work to do over the weekend, but I did expect it. Currently doing some notes on the political origins of ECM! I am also quite daunted that we start school in 3 weeks, too
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        Taught my first lesson on the primary placement today!

        I've done plenty of teaching in the past, but this was when I was doing long-term cover and was pretty much left to my own devices. So I'm worried in case I'm making lots of mistakes because no-one's been checking up on me, and I was quite nervous about teaching this Y6 class with their class teacher watching, but she said it went pretty well although timing was a bit of an issue and it took longer than intended.

        I'm now going to be teaching the same lesson to a different Y6 class next week. Hopefully this will help me to start overcoming my fear of being observed before I start the PGCE properly.
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        (Original post by Keziah)
        Taught my first lesson on the primary placement today!

        I've done plenty of teaching in the past, but this was when I was doing long-term cover and was pretty much left to my own devices. So I'm worried in case I'm making lots of mistakes because no-one's been checking up on me, and I was quite nervous about teaching this Y6 class with their class teacher watching, but she said it went pretty well although timing was a bit of an issue and it took longer than intended.

        I'm now going to be teaching the same lesson to a different Y6 class next week. Hopefully this will help me to start overcoming my fear of being observed before I start the PGCE properly.
        Is that a requirement of the course? Or, are you just making the most of the opportunity? It seems a little early to be teaching lol.
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        (Original post by affinity89)
        Is that a requirement of the course? Or, are you just making the most of the opportunity? It seems a little early to be teaching lol.
        Yeah, it's not a requirement of the course.

        I'm mostly observing but there is a list of ways to get involved in the primary school and that does include the suggestion that we might 'prepare and present a short personal contribution to the class'.

        But as none of the primary teachers were too keen on teaching a French class with a French graduate observing, and it seems to often get pushed out to make room for other activities becaue some of the teachers aren't very confident, I volunteered to teach one lesson for the main class I've been working with (and then as it went OK another teacher asked if I could do it with her class next week).

        So it wasn't really a 'short contribution'! I took the register in French so they could all just practise saying "Bonjour Madame", then introduced the topic of animals. I'd made a card match-up task for them, so they could see that lots of words are similar in French and English (I put picture clues on the ones which aren't similar), then we went through the words, checking they'd matched them up right and practising pronunciation. We ended with a guessing game to practice questions, so one pupil had an animal card and the rest of the class had to guess "As-tu un chat?" etc. and the pupil answered "Non" or "Oui, j'ai un chat".

        I think it was worth doing - because it was in primary I focused on making it fun, and also on finding ways to help pupils see the similarities between French and English and deal with it as a puzzle/problem-solving task rather than panicking when faced with a word they don't initially recognise. Whereas when I worked in an MFL department in secondary, pupils were already well into the year and I just kind of carried on with the stuff they'd been doing out of the textbook. I've definitely had ideas over the past week in primary that I could use in secondary too.
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        I must say Keziah you seem to be very motivated! A lot more motivated than me at the moment but that is probably becuase I am suffering with a cold which makes you not want to do anything, but this is teaching, which means being 'on stage' all the time, so you have to push yourself!

        Anyway my primary observation is all done. Due to start the Uni part of the course on Monday. Not expecting it to be easy going at all, but we will see. Looking forward to doing lots of maths teaching later on more than anything.
       
       
       
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