One Down, Two to go…

I cannot believe that I have made it to my final week of first year as a trainee teacher! It is very true what they say about university happening very fast but I did not think it would fly by this quickly.

I have really enjoyed my time as a first year student and can confidently say that I have started to identify what my teaching identity is and what kind of teacher I can be. I thought that as my last post of first year, I would go through all my favourite parts of my first year of the Primary Education course!

Faculty of Education
  • Science – I really loved all my science classes this year, enough to change from an English Specialist to a Science Specialist! The lessons were really fun and engaging and I can’t wait to use what I have learned in my own classroom some day!
  • Lectures – to be honest, I thought that the lectures were going to be boring but, I was pleasantly surprised when I attended the first couple of lectures and they were anything but boring.
  • 1D – I have met some really lovely people on this course, especially in my seminar group. Could not have done maths from 4-6 on a Thursday without them!
  • Placement – this goes without saying that professional practice really did make me even more passionate about becoming a teacher, even when I had my doubts. I loved the school that I was placed in so much and the help and support I received throughout my practice was immense.
  • APD lectures – these were probably one of my favourite lectures to attend because I always found them really interesting and engaging.
  • Minor Specialism – I was so glad that I was able to dedicate one day out of my week to work on a subject that I was really really passionate about which is Physical Education. It was so different from sitting in the lecture hall or class as I was able to move about but learn as well.

Thank you for reading! I am so happy with how my first year has went and I cannot wait until my next year begins!

Lauren x

PSKA and ESKA week!

After all the worrying and stressing over PSKA’S and ESKA’S I can finally say that they are all over! I am glad that I kept all my evidence in the one PSKA folder from all my subjects as it was much easier to refer back to during my ESKA’S and I didn’t need to keep four separate folders.

my PSKA folder!

Now time to relax and await my final assignment marks to return….

Thank you for reading!

Lauren x

The Easter Holidays

So, I am currently back in ‘wee’ Ireland on my Easter holidays, enjoying the family time and catching up with friends and all the dogs walks I missed out on when I was in Uni.

One of my many sunrise photos

While I was submitting my Minor Specialism assignment, it quickly dawned on me that I have nearly finished my first year in Uni and I cannot get over how quickly the year goes by.

I will be doing an overall ‘first year experience’ on my digital story but I just wanted to upload this to someday look back on reminisce on how amazing my time at Edge Hill has been and how thankful I am for all the support I have had from my teachers and seminar group.

Currently trying to start the final assignment of first year (PED1016) so hopefully I can look back on this blog and remind myself that even when I am finding something really difficult at the moment, I know that I will eventually overcome it…after a couple of tantrums and smashing of keyboards… 🙂

Thanks for reading this really spontaneous and non-procrastination driven post. See ya,

Lauren xo

My Caving Experience with My Year 3 Class

Hey everyone! A couple of weeks ago, I was given the opportunity to go on a school trip with my year 3 class as part of their ‘Stone Age’ topic. However, this was not like any other school trip I have been on as it involved me going underground…in a cave…with 31 children…

One of the caves we explored on the day!

To be completely honest, I was very apprehensive about attending the trip as I did not like the thought of being confined underground for a period of time but I knew that I may never be given this experience again.

I had to make sure that I had everything prepared the night before: thermal hat, thermal socks, thermal gloves, welly-boots, raincoat, thermal leggings and waterproof socks. I also had to make sure that I had my alarm set for 4:45 so that I could get the taxi at 5:45 to be at the school before 7 to help with the children. This was probably the hardest part of the trip.

Once I had helped the children into their thermal boiler suits and packed them on the bus to the caves, my nerves calmed as I knew I had to be brave for the children and be as encouraging as I could.

Yes, I had to climb through this with several children screaming and water filling my boots…still fun though!

As we squeezed through the caves, the leader taught us all about the history of the caves and interesting facts which actually calmed me down. The children really enjoyed learning all they could about the caves in between the times they weren’t climbing over the rocks and exploring the caves deeper.

I found that the trip was amazing for the children in terms of building resilience and trusting their partners to lead them through the dark stretch of tunnels. Seeing them grow braver with each cave they explored was quite fulfilling as some of them were apprehensive about going in the first place.

The trip to the caves was also very beneficial for me as I felt as though I overcame a fear I didn’t know I had. I am so thankful for my placement school for providing me with this learning opportunity and allowing me to experience a trip with no limits.

Overall, after a very long, tiring day, it is safe to say that it was a trip that I will always remember!

Thank you for reading – Lauren x

Coping with change.

Hey everyone, and welcome to part 3 of My Digital Story! I am currently on placement for my first year of being a trainee teacher and I am loving every minute of it so far. In part 4 of My Digital Story, I will go into more detail about how I have been finding it and what I have been getting up to!

For this part, I wanted to add in something that I struggled with the most when I first started this journey and how I overcame it as I believe it might help anyone else who has dealt with it. Enjoy!

Starting the course!

When I first came to university, I was obviously so scared about the drastic change that would inevitably happen. I knew that it was going to be different from what I had been doing my whole life, however I didn’t know how to deal with it. It took me a long time to settle into a routine which was not easy to find and that is one piece of advice I would give anyone who is struggling with change, take your time.

Luckily for me, in my first term, I had so many people to help me settle into the change of direction and new journey of my life. And so, when I did find my feet and routine, I had a whole group of people to help me cope with assignments, lectures and I could help them in return.

After I had settled into the campus and the course (after a good month or two) I was so happy and enthusiastic about going to lectures, seminars and as weird and nerdy as it sounds, completing assignments, simply because I knew what I was doing!

Before Professional Practice began…

Now, after going home for almost a month during Christmas, my routine went out the window! I had a new routine at home that was completely different to what I had at university; getting up and going to lectures, coming back to the flat or going to the catalyst to work on assignments was what I knew.

When I returned back to campus after Christmas, I knew everything was going to change which, knowing me, scared the life out of me. As a result of this, I was very stressed and almost made a decision that would change this journey.

After annoying my mum on the phone for a very long time (sorry mum), I realised that this was exactly how I felt before starting university in September and that all I needed was some time to settle into my placement school and find a routine that works for me and my professional practice.

And again, I had such amazing support from my friends and family to keep me on track so that I could continue with my journey of being a teacher.

Now: Week Three of Professional Practice

At this point in time, I am on week 3 of Professional Practice and I could not be happier with where I am in terms of not just placement but mindset and my journey.

Over the past couple of weeks, I have settled in really well again to living in halls and travelling to school everyday.

This post might not relate to a lot of people, but it is part of my personally journey as a trainee teacher and I thought it was important to share all the ups and downs of it as I know I will look back at this and be thankful for how far I have come as teacher.

See ya next time, Lauren Fitzsimons, 1D.