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Dear James - difficult start to second placement

Discussion in 'Trainee and student teachers' started by Brint, Mar 9, 2011.

  1. Brint

    Brint New commenter

    Hi James
    I'm very concerned about the start to my second placement, I'm hoping you can give me some advice.
    I am in the third week of my placement, I started teaching two of my classes last week and started with a third class this week. My first lesson went badly, I was aware it didn't go well; after the lesson my mentor was annoyed and berated me for 15 minutes. She didn't mention anything positive about the lesson, her feedback was in the style of a rant. Today I had another lesson and I was pleased with it, it wasn't perfect but I felt I had made progress. It was my first lesson with this class. Before lessons I am supposed to borrow a laptop to connect to the interactive whiteboard but the class teacher refused to lend me hers, she was eventually told by my mentor that she had to, so she did. But then she left the class at the very start and sent another member of staff in to give me his laptop, I had to reconnect and log in again which took time, she didn't come back for another ten minutes. During the lesson she kept talking to pupils asking what they thought of my lesson and whether they were learning anything. After the lesson she left and I had to seek her out to get feedback. I couldn't believe her first criticism - she said the starter took too long. Of course it took too long, I had to switch computers right in the middle of it! Then she said she would take the class back next week and I would be limited to observing and some team teaching - after just one lesson with the class. Another teacher has now said he wants to do the same with me and his class, after just two lessons.
    I did very well in my first placement, most of observations were rated good, three were rated outstanding and one was rated satisfactory. I really enjoyed my time at my last school and was delighted I chose to do a PGCE. In my current placement I feel totally demoralised. How do I deal with this? Surely, if I complain it will only make things worse. I'm worried I will fail this placement despite my hardwork, I stay at school until five or six every day and then go to my uni library to do more planning, most days of the week I don't get home until after eleven. Another trainee in the department has said he is having a similar experience and has the same concerns, so it's not just me.
    Your advice would be much appreciated.
  2. trinity0097

    trinity0097 New commenter

    Contact your PGCE tutor as soon as possible, speak to them over the phone and discuss your concerns - it may be that the mentor has not had sufficient training.

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