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  1. #1
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    Default Any Secondary Teachers out there remember what their first prac was like??

    Well I'm in my first week of prac, doing a Grad Dip in Education. The theory component I am fine with but the prac part is making me so anxious!!

    I'm currently doing one week of observation and instead of feeling more confident seeing how others teach, it's doing the exact opposite! Last night (after only two days) I woke up a few times feeling anxious and panicky :-( I'm supposed to start teaching next week and it's killing me.

    With two young children (who have been clingy and teary) and another on the way (we're 6 weeks pregnant) it's all making me feel very emotional and stressed. Which is the last thing I want, but I also really want to finish the prac!

    Any teachers out there remember their first prac and how they felt? How did you deal with nerves? Any tips or suggestions??

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    Probably not the best example, but my first prac was at a "hard to staff" school. The kids were completely unprepared, disrespectful and had no response to low key interventions.

    The uni hired a bus to take 6 of us back and forth each day. As soon as we returned to uni at the end of the day we headed straight to the tavern for tequila shots.

    Moral of the story is, if your students at least stay in the classroom, have something to write with and give you half a chance to deliver instructions, it's a good start

    I think observing is worse than getting in there and just doing it! Keep your intro to a minimum and get the class started on an activity as soon as possible. Even if it's a basic "getting to know you" task it will give you a few moments to breathe and relax into the lesson. Don't be afraid to adapt your lesson plans if something simply isn't working.

    Ask your mentor as many questions as you can possibly think of - they will appreciate that you are eager to gain some of their knowledge.

    Just remember - you can do this!


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    I remember trying to quit my teaching degree after a terrible prac experience one day, but the lady I had to speak to at uni wasn't available for a couple of days. So I fronted up at my prac school in the meantime and it all turned around. Twenty years later I've had a fantastic teaching career and still laugh at that disastrous day.

    It IS daunting and I totally understand your anxious feelings. My best advice is to "fake it 'til you make it". I used to ACT like a teacher even when I didn't feel like I was one yet. Give that ridiculously confident vibe and the students will feel confident with you too. Wishy washy NEVER works!

    And remember that prac is nothing like real teaching. When you have your own class some day it is much easier!

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    I'm primary-trained, so did my prac's there, but I think this still applies: BEING ON PRAC IS NOTHING LIKE ACTUALLY BEING A TEACHER!

    I think it is really nerve-wracking, because you do have that other adult looking at you, judging you, making notes on you and these kids are virtual strangers really- there is no comfort there when it's not your own environment. It was really uncomfortable doing prac's and I hated them, but I agree with NAT256's advice- I used to tell myself that prac days were all an act.. I had to act my way through the day, pretend I was happy to be there when all I wanted to do was run away, pretend I knew what the teacher was trying to tell me half the time when all I could think about was I had an assignment to turn in in 5 days and I hadn't even started etc.

    Prac is nothing like an actual teaching job.. so square those shoulders, hold your head up high, and rock that class!

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    It's hugely nerve wracking but it does get better! You will have good and bad days, try to use your mentor teachers as much as you can and be open to feedback - it's a learning opportunity not a criticism. Teaching is always on going so just try to give yourself a break and take it each lesson at a time.

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    I agree with nomsie and Nat too. It's all an act, still is a lot of the time

    Fake it til you make it.

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    I was always anxious before my pracs, but once you get in there you are so busy you forget about the nerves.

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    Thank you all so much! I was so ready to chuck it all in yesterday but today I've decided to give it another go. Just been to the chemist and they said it was safe to take Bach's Rescue Remedy for my anxiety so fingers crossed it works!

    I think my main issue is that I have to have a teaching qualification to be a school psych which is why Im doing the course, but I don't ever plan on (or want) to teach! Very frustrating but doesn't change the requirements.

    Being pregnant and emotional really doesn't help (which is why it wasn't supposed to happen until next month lol).

    Thanks for the advice, will definitely take it all on board :-)

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    Ohh, it's hard! My advice:

    -Having someone looking over your shoulder makes things hard, but most mentor teachers are fantastic resources. Take any tips on board, they'll look at you very positively if they can see you're trying to improve.

    -Like any role where you're working with people, you can't always make them do what you want. Treat the kids with respect and they'll pick up on it. Positivity and confidence (even fake confidence) really help.

    -Even veteran teachers have bad days. Some days you might think all the kids hate you, they learnt nothing of value, and all you did was babysit them. You still got through the day, and tomorrow's a new start.

    Specifics:
    -Patrol the room/stand up the back. You get a much better view of what the kids are up to.
    -Practice projecting your voice - from the lungs, not the throat. You don't want to end up with a sore throat to top it off.

    good luck!

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    Ok. Well today was my first day of teaching - and I sucked :-(

    I'm guessing that's pretty normal.....but am still feeling very alone and sucky! Anyone want to share with me their tales of improvement on prac.?

    I know technically I'm supposed to be 'not great' and improve over the weeks but does this actually happen??


 

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