My Last Week of Internship

Better late than never, right? I know, I know, this is like, a month overdue. But hey, nobody’s perfect! I posted this on my teacher Instagram, so I will post my final reflection and thoughts of my internship experience at OPHS right here on this post! Keep in mind I originally posted this on the last day of school (December 21st) when it comes to the grammar!

**Update: I figured out how to change the date of this post so I changed it to Dec. 22nd 2018 instead of todays ACTUAL date 😉 **

My heart is so full 🍎👩🏻‍🏫🤗
For the past 4 months I have been interning at Oxbow Prairie Horizons School. While I was there I taught grade 7 Math and Science, grade 9 Math and grade 8 Math and a little but of Career Ed. for grades 7 & 9. Today was bittersweet as I completed my last day of internship and said goodbye to the students and staff at OPHS. I was able to spend the morning curling with the Grade 9s at the rink, it was a great way to end the year since I was able to see the students outside of the classroom!
I couldn’t have asked for a better experience than the one I had here at OPHS! I have learned so much and have grown so much as a person. I truly have picked the most perfect and wonderful career for me. Many tears were shed and many hugs were given as the end of the day neared and I am so grateful for everything. (If you know me, you know I rarely cry and rarely hug so today was a big deal)
On January 8th I head back to the University to start my last semester of my Education degree and I can’t wait! I can see the light at the end of the tunnel!

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Week 14 & 15 of Internship

I am one week away from being finished my internship here at OPHS! Last week and this week have started to blend together so I will write for both weeks in one blog post reflection.

One highlight from last week (Dec 3rd-7th) was that on Tuesday December 4th the power went out for 12 hours. The students were here at school when the power first went out around 10am. At noon hour all of the students’ parent’s were contacted and they were either sent home or to their billet’s house. The staff stayed here at the school until the regular school day was over at 3:15pm. I was able to do some planning on my laptop but it was hard to do since there was no internet connection because the power was off.

This week has been busy, busy, busy! On Tuesday I received my final intern IPP, and I have passed my internship! My co-op and I discussed what she had marked and decided on and I agreed with her completely. I was able to see the areas in which I excel at and the areas in which I need more improvement in. One thing that my co-op teacher pointed out was that I was really good at communicating with parents and contacting home. She even said that she had learned a thing or two from me! One area in which I need to improve on is walking around the classroom more. I have noticed that I often gravitate to the front of the classroom where the desk is and I stay there. The students come up to me if they have questions and they seem comfortable with that but I know I need to wander to check in with them as they are working. For a watch, I use a Fitbit. My co-op mentioned that I could try to aim for 1,000-1,500 steps per class, this way I am working towards my goal of checking in on students AND towards my daily step goal! On Wednesday my faculty advisor came to pick up my IPP to bring it back to the University. My faculty advisor was such a sweet person and I am grateful to have met her and to have had her as my advisor.

 

Week 13 of Internship

I forgot to post for last week which was Week 13 (Nov 26th – 30th)! This post will be my week 13 post, even if it is a week late!

On Monday November 26th we had a PD day so there were no students at school that day. So Tuesday was the first day of school that week for the students.

In the grade 7A class on Tuesday we did a Kahoot to review our fraction and decimal skill we had been learning about for the past week. The students always seem to enjoy doing Kahoots on the first day back to school after a weekend. During second hour, when I normally teach the 7B’s Math we had a motivational speaker that spoke to the grades 6-12. The speaker’s name was Tracy Johnson and she shared her story of resiliience. The grade 9 Math class went as usually, they wrote their Unit 3 math test on Rational Numbers and then worked on some IXL practice to see what they knew for their next unit on Linear Relations. That afternoon I taught Math 8, the students had textbook practice to finish up and then we measured and calculated the surface area of the nets we created at the beginning of this unit. The last hour of the day I had the 7A’s for Science. We did some popcorn reading about the Earth’s Crust and Its Resources and we took some notes on what we had read and what the main ideas were.

Wednesday was an exciting day! The Superintendent of our school division (South East Cornerstone Public School Division) came to observe me teach grade 8 Math. I made sure the week before that I was planned out for the following week, and I made sure I had everything photocopied that I needed. The students were working on a handout with practice on surface area of rectangular prisms, cubes and triangular prisms. I believe that my visit with the superintendent went really well! She gave me helpful feedback that I will be using in the future when it comes to my teaching practices. I was also able to use her feedback to reflect on what I thought went well and on what I think I could improve on for next time.

On Friday the Grade 7A’s and 7B’s started to create holiday cards! Students from OPHS were invited to create holiday greeting cards to share with the community’s Home Care clients that the home care health aide staff would deliver as they visited each of their clients throughout December. Here are a few of the cards that the Grade 7’s created:

Photo Challenge Club has been going great so far! I have around 8-12 kids at every meeting. There are around 13-14 members. Some kids often miss meetings because of Band at lunch and yearbook meetings at lunch. These kids who miss the meetings still take the time to find out what the week’s challenge is and still submit pictures which makes me happy that even though they can’t make the meetings they are still wanting to be a part of the club. I will post a link to the Google Slides with all of their photographs they have sent me when the students have sent me all their challenge submissions!

 

Week 12 of Internship

This week was a busy one. Today I felt like I could finally take a minute to catch my breath. This was my second week of my three-week teaching block, and holy, I am tired! On Tuesday I got home from school, finished my marking, ate supper and I was out like a light by 8:30pm! That never happens! Normally I am up until 11:00pm on a any given day, but not Tuesday. I woke up Wednesday morning feeling so refreshed!

Many of the classes I teach were missing some students this week because of Agribition in Regina and because kids are starting to get sick (boo, germs!). I found myself playing ‘catch-up’ with many students as they left and came back from Agribition or from being sick. I started feeling like a broken record after teaching the same lesson for the 5th time! I was lucky though and has a few students let me know ahead of time that they were going to be away which allowed me to get small Math homework packages for them to work on while they were away, this way they wouldn’t be behind when they returned.

This week was Math on Math on Math on Math with a touch of Science. The grade 7A’s and 7B’s are working on organizing and comparing fractions and decimals, turning mixed numbers into improper fractions, turning improper fractions into mixed numbers and they are also turning fractions into decimals and decimals into fractions. We did LOADS of practice on IXL this week and they seem to have gotten the hang of some of those skills!

The grade 9’s finished up Unit 3 on Rational Numbers. It was a quick unit! They learned the skills of adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing rational numbers (integers, fractions and decimals) and then using the order of operations to solve rational number problems. Again, we did LOADS of practice on IXL to practice these skills after completing some textbook work. One thing that I noticed while teaching rational numbers is that it is SO important to remind students to SHOW THEIR WORK! When they show their work I am able to see the steps they took to get to their final answer. Even if their answer is wrong, I can see where they might have gone sideways in their work. For example, maybe they added when they should’ve multiplied or they might have missed a negative sign. When student’s don’t show their work I am unable to see their thought process and where they might have gone goofy in the problem.

The grade 8’s are about 1/4 of the way through Unit 4 on Surface Area. So far they have learned how to find the surface are of a rectangular prism. Before we started to find surface area, I had the students work in partners on a work sheet that had them name the different 3D objects (cube, rectangular pyramid, tlriangular pyramid, octagonal prism, hexagonal prism, etc.). I also had the students do a handout that had them label how many edges, vertices, and faces different prisms and pyramids have. They did great on these!

In Science 7 we wrapped up Unit 1 on Interactions within Ecosystems. Yesterday (Nov. 22) we started reading about our next unit on Earths Crust and Resources (this is normally Unit 4 but I wanted to switch things up). As a class we read the first two pages that introduced the unit in the textbook. Then I had students partner up and look at some pictures in the textbook and discuss what they see and what they think caused the Earth to change in those ways.

Next week is my last week of my three week block! The school division’s superintendent is coming to observe me teach on Wednesday Nov. 28th at 1:00pm and I am a bit nervous! Monday the 27th is a PD day so I will have that day to prep and to get myself organized for the week.

Week 11 of Internship

Whoops, I am writing this post a week late! But better late than never, right?

This week was from Nov. 13th-16th (we had no school on Monday the 12th for Remembrance Day the day before).

This week marked the first week of my three week teaching block! I was going to start my three week block the week before this one, but we postponed it to start on the 13th instead of the 6th. During my three week block I will be teaching Math 7A, Math 7B, Math 9, Math 8 and Science 7A. I loved Math class throughout my years in elementary, middle and high school so I am so happy that I now get a chance to teach it.

I was super nervous this week because I was worried I might feel overwhelmed by teaching all five classes. I was definitely overwhelmed at first, especially being in the grade 8 classroom for the first time since that first week of school. That feeling didn’t last very long and quickly disappeared because those grade 8’s are the sweetest, kindest, and funniest group of kids I have ever met. They were so happy to see me again! (I was originally interning under a different teacher in the school who teaches grade 8 ELA, Math, Science, Grade 9 ELA and Grade 10 ELA. So I had been in that classroom the first two weeks before that teacher had to leave for her Maternity leave early and then I was switched to the Co-op teacher I am currently working with). The unit that I am doing with the grade 8’s is Surface Area and Volume of Rectangular and Triangular Prisms and Cylinders. There is A LOT to do in this unit and there are so many hands on activities that the students can do which is great because these students are very engaged when it comes to a hands-on learning experience.

 

Week 10 of Internship

Hello November!

This week marks the first week of my three/four week teaching block of Internship. So I will be teaching Math 7A, Math 7B, Math 9, Math 8 and Science 7A. I am sooo happy that I am able to teach Math as it was one of my strongest subject areas when I was in elementary and high school. I also have found that I enjoy teaching Math as it provides a lot of group discussion and the question of “why?”. I have been able to use Kahoot about once a week in Math class as well. Kahoot is a great resource to use with the grade 7A’s and 7B’s I have found. With the grade 9’s I am still on the fence if Kahoot is beneficial with them or not.

On Wednesday Nov. in both Math 7 classes and Math 9 we reviewed what they have learned in their current unit with mini whiteboards. I used the program IXL to project questions on the big whiteboard that students could answer on their mini boards. I found that by projecting the questions on the board instead of writing them that I didn’t have to have my back towards the students. I was able to keep my eyes on the students to see when/if they were struggling and I was more able to answer their questions. The grade 7’s were doing questions revolving around adding and subtracting integers using number lines and tiles. The grade 9’s were doing questions revolving around rational numbers (what a rational number is and isn’t, ordering rational numbers from least to greatest, and adding and subtracting rational numbers).

Thursday was the junior girls and junior boys’ volleyball districts. Since the districts were during the school day, around half of each class (7A, 7B, and 9’s) were away. The Junior Girls were in Redvers and the Junior Boy’s tournament was here in Oxbow in the school gym. Instead of starting a new topic in all grades, students had a work/study period and a Career Ed work period. The grade 7’s finished up their 2.4/2.5 Math Assessment and worked on some IXL math practice to study for their Unit 2 test on November 13th. When they finished their IXL they worked on finishing their “Who am I?” PowerPoint for Career Ed. If they finished this too, then they were welcome to play math games on the computers or try a Globe Puzzle I had gotten from Chapters last year. The grade 9’s had a pretty similar class, they finished up their 3.1, 3.2, 3.3 Assessments as well as finished their Mid-Unit Review on rational numbers. When they finished this, they were to work on their overdue Career Ed assignments. Once done this, they could go watch our Oxbow Junior Boys team play volleyball in the gym.

Friday is a PD day, so the students will not be at school. I am planning on doing a PD on the PD Hub about using Flipgrid. I have heard so many good things about Flipgrid but I have never looked into it or played around with it so I am eager to learn more about it!

 

 

Week 9 of Internship

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What does an owl say on halloween? Happy Owl-Ween!
Why didn’t the skeleton go to the party? He had no body to dance with!
What kind of pants does a ghost wear? Boo jeans!

Okay, first things first, I need to reflect on last Friday (Oct. 26th). Friday also happened to be my faculty advisor’s second visit to observe me.

That day was a mess. By the end of the school day, I was left so frustrated and I was left feeling so discouraged & disheartened. I struggled with everything that day it felt like. I couldn’t settle my grade 7’s not my grade 9’s down after transitioning into the classroom from their previous class, I had students horsing around and disrupting those around them and it was like everything I had taught the day before had just gone up and left their minds. It was hard. When I got home from school, I took a break. I sat down, thought about the day and reflected back on not the negative aspects, but those positive aspects I might have overlooked. I thought back to when one of my grade 7’s walked in the classroom first thing in the morning and said “Good morning Miss Mallo, how are you!?”. I thought back to how efficiently, quietly and individually my one class of grade 7’s worked. I realized that sure I might’ve had a few cloudy patches in my day, but there were also moments of sunshine that came through.

But you know what? At the end of the day, no matter how good or how bad, I’ll learn from that experience and I’ll grow from it.

Now, let’s move onto Monday (Oct. 29th).

Monday was a good day, I felt so much more relaxed and calm while teaching. I didn’t feel scattered and I felt collected and cool. The Math lessons in grade 7A, 7B and 9 all went smoothly (for the most part). One of my grade 9 students came up to me before Math started to show me a picture of a Mule deer he shot this weekend while he was out hunting, and it was pretty impressive! Another student then came up and showed me a video of a White-tailed deer he had caught on his trail camera. My boyfriend’s family are big hunters, so I have showed these boys pictures of what he’s got. Lately, whenever one of the hunting boys gets something (shot or on camera), they show me and are so proud of themselves. It’s so cool to see their face light up when they talk about something they are passionate about like hunting.

Tuesday was another work day. Students were given their assignments on Monday so they had Tuesdays class time to work on them.

Today is Wednesday and it is also Halloween! Today in all three Math classes (Math 7A, 7B and 9)  the students all were given Halloween math handouts with practice questions from the unit each grade is working on. They had to solve each problem to figure out the riddle on the bottom of the page. I made these handouts myself so there were a few errors on the first two pages on the handout, but we fixed them up and the students were still able to do them. After they had done about 2 pages of the handouts, we played bingo as a class. I was really worried that my grade 9’s would think bingo was lame or too young for them, but they LOVED it!! I was so impressed! They were so focused and so quiet while playing, I couldn’t believe it!

On Thursday and Friday (Nov. 1st-2nd) my co-op and I are going to the SMYA (Saskatchewan Middle Years Association) Conference in Regina. I am super excited about this as it will be the first SMYA I have gone to. There are so many speed learning sessions to pick from and then some big breakout sessions to choose form. For speed learning sessions, I think I am going to chose the: ELA – Reading, Science, Cross Curricular (Google Classroom), Math, Cross Curricular (Growth Mindset) and Cross Curricular (Helpful Websites). For the breakout sessions I think I am going to choose to do the one with Dr. Debbie Silver on Thursday called “Deliberate Optimism – Reclaiming the Joy in Education” and on Friday I’ll choose the one with Pernille Ripp called “A Picture Book Taught Me This”.

I am also excited to go to the SMYA because I know some other Interns from the Middle-Years Education classes I’ve had will be there too. It will be so nice to see some familiar faces again and to catch up with how their internship has been going!

Week 8 of Internship

Since September I have been working really hard to connect with a student, let’s call him R. He has been struggling in Math class since the beginning of the school year. I went and talked to his previous teachers and found out that this is not new news to them, as he has always struggled in Math class. Well after those discussions I knew there was no way I was going to just push this student to do Math that he wasn’t ready to do and wasn’t comfortable doing. So first to adapt to his needs I reduced his work load, instead of doing questions 1-5 he would do 1, 3, 5 and every other letter within those questions. I thought I had solved the issue! Turns out I was wrong, so back to the drawing board I went. I went and talked to our schools RTI and LST teachers, and holy cow, those ladies are WONDERFUL! They were so helpful and pointed me in the right direction: I needed to read aloud his questions verbally to him while he did assessments. I was buzzing I was so happy and excited to try this with the following day’s Math assessment. So while the students were all working on their assessments, R brought his up to me and we sat together at my desk and I read aloud the questions to him. He understood, explained, demonstrated and wrote the answers all correctly! I was so proud of him! His smile was contagious when he saw me mark a giant M (Meeting Expectations) on the top of his assessment, it made my day!

Today with the Grade 9’s we kind of played catch-up. Yesterday during Math class the grade 9 students did not use their class time effectively so their 3.1 Textbook Practice was due for the start of class this morning. Only four students had actually brought their homework home and finished it. So as a result, which I had told them yesterday what would happen if they didn’t finish, they were signed up for Success class at lunch hour to finish up their assignment. Those who finished their assignment and finished their 3.1 Assessment then started their fifth and sixth Career Ed. assignment. Some students finished both of those as well so then they were given the rest of the class time to work on Math on IXL under Grade 8 and the IXL outcomes E1 (Identify Rational and Irrational Numbers) and E6 (Put Rational Numbers in Order). Those students who hadn’t finish (some hadn’t even started their 3.1 textbook practice from yesterday, again, not using class time effectively) were given a repeat of the 3.1 lesson that I had presented the day before so it was fresh in their minds.

Today (Thursday Oct. 25th) in Science the grade 7 students have chosen their groups with who they would like to work with for their Waste Management PowerPoint Presentation. Today, as a class, we are going to create a rubric together for which they will be assessed on for when they complete their presentation.

Tomorrow (Friday Oct. 26th) I am hoping and planning that the grade 7 Math classes will both finish up sections 2.2 and 2.3 and the assessment that will cover both sections. After they finish their assessments, they will be working on Math IXL. On IXL they will be working under Grade 6 and the IXL outcomes C1-C4 (All about integers – our current unit). With the grade 9’s I am going to try to do a Kahoot with them. This is the Kahoot I will be using. The Kahoot will be all about rational numbers. This will work as a review and an interactive activity that the students can use to become more familiar and practiced with Rational numbers.

Tomorrow is also a big day for me because my Faculty Advisor is coming for her second visit. She we be watching me teach my morning classes which include: Math 7A, Math 7B and Math 9.

Week 7 of Internship

Week 7 is here! I have started to teach four classes now. I am teaching Math 7A, Math 7B, Math 9 and now I have picked up Science 7A.

In both Math 7A and 7B we are beginning to wrap up Unit 1 (finally, wooo!)! I am excited to begin Unit 2 on Integers next week with both classes.

The Math 9’s with me and the RTI teacher are also starting to wrap up Unit 2, so next week we will be able to start Unit 3. The students who are with the RTI teacher are doing great, they are working at a slower pace but that is okay because they are still getting their work completed and handed in. If they have questions or they are stumped, they know to ask the RTI teacher or to come to me for help.

With both classes (grade 7’s and 9’s) I have noticed that students have become more comfortable with coming up to me and raising their hands to questions during class. They raise their hands more, say my name to get my attention, and they come right up to me at the front desk. I’ve also started to become a bit more lenient with the seating plan from earlier. If students are working well (working on textbook practice, finishing assessments, asking meaningful questions, using their peers around them for help) in the space they are in, then they can stay working there. If a student is wanting to move away from those around them at the tables, they are more than welcome to work at the standing desk, standing counters by the sinks and paper towel dispensers or on the big bench seat in front of the window. Some students sometimes will still ask to work in a new spot, but some just go to a new spot on their own and work productively. I think this is wonderful because they are building that independence! When the students who do locate to a new area in the classroom move they are also beginning to recognize where they are most productive, how they work best and who they work best around.

On Wednesday and Thursday this week we are having Student Led Conferences (SLC for short). The students’ report cards do not go out until November. This round of SLC allows for the parents to come in, meet their child/ren’s teachers and allows for the parents to find out how their child/ren are doing so far in the semester without that first report card term. This will be my first time being on the teacher side of the table for Student Led Conference, it is a new experience! I believe that by being able to experience Student Led Conferences from an Intern perspective will be beneficial for me once I become a teacher. I will learn how to talk to parents, how to say what I need to say in that limited 10-15 mins (I tend to talk too fast when I am nervous ha ha), and how to discuss and problems or concerns a parent might have.

On Friday (Oct. 19) we have a Pep Rally for the Senior Girls Volleyball Tournament that OPHS is hosting this weekend. The Pep Rally is being held during second hour, which is when I normally teach the Grade 7B Math/Career Ed. class, so we will just be working on their Career Ed project until we get called down to the gymnasium for the Rally. I have heard whispers that there might be a Cha Cha Slide dance off, and maybe a few lip sync battles but we’ll have to see! I am sure it will be fantastic, the SRC here at OPHS always does a great job when it comes to getting the students hyped up during Pep Rallies and Assemblies!

 

Week 6 of Internship

This week was a short three day week! There was no school on Monday October 8th because of Thanksgiving and on Friday it was a PD day for teachers so the students didn’t have classes.

On Tuesday the first two hours in the morning consisted of Math 7A and Math 7B. The grade 7A’s started working on their 1.6 (Graphing Relations) textbook practice and they finished up the previous 1.5 Assessment. The 7B’s wrote their M-Comp during the first 8 minutes of class.

During third hour it was Portfolio time. So each grade, 7’s through 12’s, went to their homeroom to empty out and refill their portfolios for Student Led Conferences that will be held October 17th and 18th. The grade 7B’s are Mrs. Kosior (my co-ops) homeroom class so they are also my homeroom class! The 7B’s came in and began to empty their portfolios if they still had papers in them from the previous year. Once they were done that, they were able to insert new assignments that they are proud of into their portfolios to show their parents at Student Led Conferences.

Later in the week the grade 7A’s and 7B’s were introduced to Section 1.7 which is all about Reading and Writing Equations. They were given class time to work through an Equation Translation hand out. For this handout they were able to sit where ever in the classroom and they could work with a partner to work through the handout.

The grade 9’s are moving quickly through Unit 2 which is all about Exponents, Bases and Powers! On Wednesday Oct. 10th 10 students, the ones who are in the classroom with me, started to work on the Mid-Unit Check Point handout and the Mid-Unit Review in the textbook. The students who work in the foyer with the RTI teacher finished up their 2.2 Assessment and some finished their 2.3 textbook practice.

On Monday October 15th I plan to do another Kahoot with the Grade 7A’s and B’s about equations. They seemed to really like the Kahoots and it gives them a chance to use their math skills that they have been learning about in a different way!