Although I have always felt privileged to be part of the MDTA, I felt particularly fortunate as the children started to fill the classroom on my first day.
I began to feel nervous and questioned what I had learnt over the last few years. Did I remember how to be a teacher? Was there a school norm regarding the children's entrance to the classroom? I had spoken to other beginning teachers that morning, and found that they shared my anxiety.
Yet I was not alone and I took comfort in my mentors confidence. She began the day by explaining that we would be co -teaching the class and introduced herself with a letter addressed to our learners. I followed suit and gained confidence as I read. I even received a round of applause at the end of my recital, which further put my mind at ease. The remainder of the day ran smoothly and I felt that we had a successful first week. I certainly feel far less stressed than my peers outside of the MDTA!
I also feel very fortunate to have a mentor who shares similar ideas to my own. We have both been able to agree on routines, planning and pedagogy with little conflict. Co - teaching with Amy has really highlighted the benefit of collaboration between teachers. We are able to bounce ideas off one another and create richer lesson plans because of it. I also realise how difficult it would be to co-teach alongside an educator with a very different teaching style to my own. Although I am sure much could be learnt, I believe that relationship between teachers and their ability to collaborate has an affect on the class climate.
Overall I am pleased with our first week and feel that I have began to develop positive relationships with my learners. I know that there are areas that I need to improve on, such as ensuring that I follow up on misbehaviour with appropriate consequences, but I feel optimistic about the year ahead. I am looking forward to developing my practice in a safe environment. I am looking forward to being able to take risks and to try new things that I would not have the confidence or opportunity to do without a mentor or being part of this programme.