Hi everyone, I've completed my first year on the BA Primary Education with QTS and I'm looking forward to the second year. I can honestly say that, although stressful at times, I genuinely love the course. I've enjoyed and excelled in the academic and placement parts of the course. I've put together some advice I have utilised during my first year (hopefully this may help someone else). Before I started the course my dad gave me some advice that I've stuck to: - Be professional at all times (personality clashes are natural but you're walking into someone else's class and being entrusted with their kids) - If any problems arise then talk to your class teacher/school mentor/university mentor as soon as possible - Take constructive criticism and act on it - Always tailor lessons to the needs of the specific class - Never turn your back on the class (unless it's literally for a second or two) - Study the school's behaviour management policy and engage with it - Reinforce expectations of behaviour and work - Model - You can either be a perfectionist or have a life (this one was personally targeted at me as during my teenage years I was a perfectionist) - Prioritise (I can't remember the name of this chart I've found helpful but it's a square you fill in under the four headings: important and urgent, not important but urgent, important but not urgent and not important and not urgent. Find a system that works for you even if it's just listing and stick with it.) - Make sure you know who the DSLs are. - Smile around the school because it makes you feel better even if you're down and it reflects well on you. - Actively ask for criticism and be willing to ask how your mentor might have gone about a task differently or what they would have changed (my mentors were shocked when, after my first observation, I walked into the feedback meeting with a mental list of what went well and areas for improvement within the lesson and when they asked how I thought the lesson had gone I was able to explain specifically which parts would need improvement and why. Personally, this has led to a deeper understanding between us and we have been able to talk about the pros and cons of different techniques I have employed during lessons. Obviously this is quite a personal experience so I guess it depends on your mentor) - Spend time to get to know the children Sorry about how long this post is, if you've made it to here then I was hoping someone with more experience than me in teaching (which is more or less everyone) would be able to give me some tips for next year's placement. I'm focusing on sorting my PDP out this summer and getting all the evidence annotated and perhaps reading a few of Sue Crowley's/Bill Rogers' behaviour management books. I don't think there's much else to do this summer apart from relax and celebrate my 19th (if there is something a trainee teacher has found useful doing the summer before then I would appreciate it if you could point it out to me). I've tried to hit the ground running with the course as I really want to be the best qualified primary teacher I can be. Again, would really appreciate any tips that you think a trainee would find useful that I haven't mentioned. Thanks a lot!