Donnerstag, 19. Januar 2012

stagnating development

We all share a common goal at the University of Education. When we graduate we want to teach. Some of us might already want to teach before that. And fortunately we have that opportunity right from the beginning of our studies. We get to spend 2 hours in class every week, starting with the second month of our teacher training. After a few weeks we’re already able to participate actively in the actual ‘teaching’, meaning we can help out with group-work and help the kids with a few exercises. 
Now imagine you’ve been working with kids for a few years now, and teaching is kind of your dream job and you really enjoy it, but because you are only a beginner student-teacher you’re not allowed to teach. You have to wait and sit through a lot of lessons observing, just like all the others. Besides that there may be a few seminars in which you feel you get no benefit out of them, it feels like no development is taking place. It can be the professor who just can’t get the message across, or the topic is boring. Then of course you got different tasks to do like writing tasks, research tasks and reading tasks. All those can be fun, but most of them aren’t.
After days and weeks of having this rhythm you ask yourself if that’s really necessary and you question your personal development. 
But if you take a moment and really look at the whole situation you will find out how much you can take out of those weeks too, and further your development easily.
When I think about the practical training I see it as a path. At the beginning you know that it's a long, long way to go, but no matter how difficult or repetitious it gets, ultimately you have to keep walking, because the longer you walk, you know the closer you get to reaching you goal and the more you can learn, be it teaching methods or just personal development.
Teaching is what we want to do, despite all the circumstances, why not enjoy being in class and learn from different teachers and colleagues who you get to watch every lesson, and you still get to work with kids and help them out.
Why not enjoy every seminar and take something positive out of the negative. You get to hear about various topics and you can focus on the didactical approach of your professor. Something I heard a lot at teacher training already: “at least you get see how it’s NOT supposed to be done”. So all in all, there is no such thing as a bad seminar.
Another thing you can take away a lot from is talking with your colleagues and spending time with them. Because basically, they have the same problems as you do.
It may be something new to them, they’re just learning how to teach, how to interact with kids and so on. They’re also overwhelmed by all the tasks they have to fulfill in a certain time period, but they sure have experience you can benefit from as well.
So why not enjoy those moments, where you get to talk about how you handle the stress, about how they handle the stress and to reflect on all the issues that’s bothering both of you together. 
The one thing you learn with time and experience is that you take something positive for your own development out of everything that gets thrown your way. You have to observe whats happening around you and think about it carefully. 
Make sure you go through your training thoughtful and try to capture the world around you and you’ll develop life skills without even noticing.

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