Getting sick of second placement already - PGCE Watch

Lazy1212342
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Hi guys,

I just want to vent right now as I'm in a really bad mood.

So, it's been over a month at placement now and basically for the first 2 and a half weeks, half the lessons I was placed into were completely random. As in, they were within my subject area, but they kept playing around by putting me in different classes as they couldn't decide on which classes I should teach. Which, I'd say is understandable, but then it's just wasted my time.

I finally got my timetable, a week before half-term, and was made to teach the classes I never got to see. It is a good developmental experience, but I'm a trainee. I've come from a school which was graded outstanding, where 95% of the children were well behaved and if there was any misbehaviour it was really low level, that it could be sorted out quite easily.

The students at this school I'd say 95% of them are horrendous. I wouldn't just blame the students on that, because from what I've seen is that teachers, be it in my department or outside - their behaviour management practices are very inconsistent. They have a good behaviour policy, but it's not followed through correctly.

I've been trying my best to be strict, and to some extent, it has worked but my host teachers who themselves don't make an effort to discipline the students, have told me to improve on behaviour management. Whenever I've told students off - I've noticed my host teachers end up interrupting and intervening. Like yes, thank you for that! But, if I'm teaching let me deal with it & rest assured I'd be more strict than the actual host teacher, who choose to just ignore their disruptive behaviour and do nothing about it.

For example, two students were playing games with their back turned around whilst the teacher was giving instructions. The teacher saw that, did nothing apart from just telling them off after explaining the task. & as expected, both students didn't have a clue of what to do, so the teacher had to explain it to them again. What a waste of time and energy!

I've also noticed, that students are being spoon fed. I am completely against that idea, I try my best to get students to think. And my mentor has always pointed out that as a very strong point. However, recently, because I am feeling low - I just haven't been able to do that effectively. These issues are getting to me.

For example, I was teaching and some students clearly wanted to be given the answer (they had their notes in front of them, all they had to do was read), I realised that and I tried to get them thinking, I was making them read, which worked with some students and one or two refused to do it, so they called the host teacher (clearly for the answer) - which was given to them straight away! Like, they will be sitting an exam at the end of the course , no one's going to help them (the host teacher mentioned this point). Therfore, as a teacher it is necessary to embed independent learning, which I know is hard, but it's not impossible after giving some guidance which is needed for certain students who do genuinely struggle! They need to be taught to be responsible for their own learning, to take initiative, rather than be spoon fed.

Well it got me really p****d off! To the extent that I just gave up on my lesson there and then. Which ended up being really crap! As expected. I was aware of it, throughout. But, I'm gonna try my best to not let it get to me next time. Hopefully!

Moving on, I'm supposed to be teaching at least 10-11 hours right now (half the teachers timetable). This week so far, I've only taught 3 hours, and tomorrow I'd be team teaching 2 lessons. I understand that they are easing me in especially because I was given my timetable late. But, how long will that carry on, the earlier I start teaching properly - the more time I'll have to develop myself.

Finally, my mentor who is really nice, however, is very laid back. My lesson observation sheets are not filled in with an appropriate amount of detail, same with my mentor meeting sheet which I have to fill in myself and I just send it to be checked over and signed. At last placement, I'd spend 30-40 mins for my mentor meeting, we'd both have a long discussion about lessons/activities etc. whereas, at the moment, the meeting barely lasts 15 minutes. Although, I didn't get many observation sheets, they were filled in with satisfactory amount of detail.

They are genuinely lovely people but I'm just feeling really annoyed with the fact that I'm not getting too far considering it's been over a month. I just hope my university link tutor doesn't decide to come and observe at this stage, as some of my other peers will be getting observed in the coming weeks.

Another of my colleague who is also at the same placement, in another department - are always on top of everything - the lesson observation, the mentor meetings, feedback, sitting down & going through the SOW/planning and providing student details (SEND etc) to help with differentiation. I asked my mentor, and all I was told is that I can get it from Sims, but I have not been given access to Sims.

My colleague's mentor is fighting for access to Sims, whereas, I don't have a clue what mine is doing. My first placement was very well organised in that sense - I had a proper induction and got access to email, school system, Sims etc the very first day.

Although my first placement went well and was told I should apply when they have a vacancy, I really wasn't a fan of my department, so really wouldn't consider. Anyways, I just don't know what to do, although I'm not a give up person - I've ended up with an 'I can't be bothered now' kind of attitude and I have noticed it in some of the lessons I've been teaching.

I haven't gotten fed up of teaching, because I really do like it! And it's lovely to build a positive relationship with students, who learn, who feel safe and confident with you. I want to be a teacher, but I'm getting annoyed.

I'm just waiting till May half-term, as that's when this placement ends. I honestly hope I don't have to do an extended placement. 10 weeks to go (excl half term/bank holidays). Hope I survive. As at this placement, every single day I feel exhausted by the time I get home. That too, I don't even stay back much or don't have much planning stuff to do and still, I feel tired. However, last placement I could survive for an extra 2-3 hours (I would leave after my department left) considering double the workload to what I have right now and would not feel tired. I would willingly stay back, but here I just can't wait to get home.
Last edited by Lazy1212342; 2 weeks ago
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