Maths Scholars, main concerns, lessons plans and innovation

Maths Scholar has picked up tips and tricksBefore I started my first placement, my main concern was that I would struggle with planning my lessons. Coming up with new, innovative ideas was what I had envisaged myself doing. I wanted to be the teacher who did an exciting lesson all the time and let the students learn through investigations not just me standing and talking.

In my first week teaching, I did just that. It would take me hours to plan a lesson. Trying to make it have all the features of my ideal lesson meant I was cutting out card sorts, laminating hand outs and making flashy PowerPoints. After a few days I realised I couldn't keep this up. I spoke to my mentor at school and we talked about how lessons can still contain fun elements but that don’t take days to plan.

Since then I have become more efficient in planning. I am still making some of my own resources but online sites have made my life a lot easier! I try and vary the style of my lessons week to week and the students appreciate this; they come in every Tuesday morning asking for the weekly word search and know that Thursday afternoon is murder mystery investigation time.

My main concern now has shifted to behaviour management. The school I am in, fortunately, has a very effective behaviour policy. Teachers follow it across the school so students know exactly where they stand. My problem is that I am finding it hard to both teach and manage a classroom full of students. When I am speaking, they will listen and take notes but when I set them off on a task, there is low level chatter throughout. I have been advised to give verbal warnings for this but I feel as if I would be picking students out of the group who weren’t necessarily behaving the worst. I need to shift my attitude so that I am less reluctant to warn students against misbehaving.

I am loving my PGCE year so far, I have grown in confidence as a teacher and I am constantly picking up tips and tricks.

If this blog has inspired you to apply to become a maths scholar then click here and start the process.