My First Experiences of Teaching Maths

When I first agreed, with my mentor, that I would teach my first mathematics lesson to a second set, year 8 class I was excited. It was a few weeks away, no problem, I’d be prepared by then. Then the realisation that I was going to have to plan a whole hour lesson and teach it!! Where to start, what level are they, where do I find resources?  And how will I remember their names? I had spent a couple of weeks observing the class, getting to know their names and a little of their personalities, but was I ready?

Anyway, the day dawned, it was first period on a Monday morning, would that be a good thing, maybe they’d be more alert after a weekend, or still in weekend mode?

I decided the most important thing was to start with the usual routines set from the beginning of term, lining up outside, greeting each student at the door as they entered. This helped me gain a feeling of control outwardly even if not on the inside. I was surprised they all followed these instructions and were attentive. I’d been imagining all sorts of behaviour issues! I introduced myself, explained my expectations and reiterated our class rules. This helped calm my nerves.

I enjoyed the lesson; everything took longer than I’d planned for, but I expect this is part of learning to be a teacher and comes with experience. I was very happy with how it went overall; loved seeing the students engaged and learning, I didn’t have too many panic moments, I remembered to breathe, and I had gained experience. I had more material than I needed but I’m pleased it was that way round. I will have to get used to the fact that students won’t smile all the time, if at all, but the fact they were looking at me and answering questions was fantastic. I had lovely feedback from my mentor with targets to aim towards and helpful suggestions for the next lesson. Some students even said ‘bye Miss’ and ‘thanks Miss’, which felt special, I am starting to build those relationships.

I felt exhilarated afterwards, ready for the next one!!

Kathryn Holt

Find Kathryn on Twitter as @holt576


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