Take care of the preservice teachers!
Updated: Feb 4, 2021
Guest post by @teachingmissamy
Hello readers I would like to introduce you to Miss Amy Geggie a preservice teacher studying in Australia! Recently she posted on Instagram about care packages for preservice teachers! I loved this post so much that I asked her to write a guest blog post about it. Without further ado here is the amazing Miss Geggie (insert round of applause here).
When thinking about student teaching, some people are completely fine – others, not so much. This was the case for a few of my peers who had never set foot in a primary classroom environment, let alone the scary upper primary!
As a cohort, we have successfully completed practicums in both a kindergarten setting and a nursery (0-2 years old), and have breezed through them all thanks to previous experiences in early learning. Primary school is different though. You have the whole Australian Curriculum to worry about.
To try and alleviate some of the stress, I created a practicum (or student teaching) survival box, similar to what I had seen on a few other pre-service teachers Instagrams. People like @little.creature.teacher created a her own survival box to support her immune system whilst on practicum in the middle of winter (yuck, germs!); and @teachingwithmissbennett was given a survival kit from her good friend @nicoleraylene
I knew that to help these preservice teachers (PST) survive this practicum field experience of 25 days total (5 single lead in days, followed by 4 weeks full time in term 4), I would need to do some brainstorming and figure out exactly what would help them.
A few stationary items were definitely a necessity:
Some gorgeous flair pens (seriously though, they write like a dream!)
Sticky notes (I have used sticky notes so much this practicum placement already in my low-SES classroom that doesn’t have access to technology)
A teacher stamp
Glue stick and eraser
Tissues (that week 4/mid-semester cry anyone?)
All items had a cute little tag about why they were in the box as well, because our PSTs needed to remember to smile and that it isn’t as scary as all that!
The final item included in the survival box was a USB. THE USB to end all USBs in fact. Each little storage device not only included important documents from the university (our time sheet, the handbook from the university, a induction form for the first day, and our interim and final reports), but it also included some downloads like a basic placement planner (if you want a really amazing one, head to @teaching_misstaylor she has an amazing one on her TPT), and all the Australian Curriculum continuum and sequence of contents for each Key Learning Area.
With all these goodies, the PSTs were still a bit concerned, but less so than before. The surprise of the gift made them all forget their fears for a moment and reflect on how far they had come, as well as how little time they really had to go before heading off into the real world of teaching.
Good luck to all pre-service teachers currently on their placement, as well as those heading off to placement soon.
It isn’t too scary - you will survive
Ask your mentor lots of questions – that’s what they’re there for.
Don’t forget to set goals, and reflect on why you’re there.
Most of all, HAVE FUN!
Head on over to the freebies page for some fun labels to print out for your field experience survival kit!