Hello everybody. Now the main reason I didn’t post much this week is because I was busier than usual. I spent the week helping out at a local pre-school- in fact the very one I went to many moons ago. I did this to gain some experience of the Early Years Foundation Stage, which you have to do for my teaching course. Well you have to do one day and you have to do some “self-directed” placements so I combined the two.
Working with a bunch of children between 3 and 5 was interesting to say the least. For the most part they were lovely but they present challenges that older children usually don’t. For example some of their speech wasn’t very clear yet they would chatter away to me and they may as well have been speaking French for all I could decipher (the general idea but nothing specific). I also saw some very gruesome things involving snot which made me want to vomit. The phrase “get a tissue” was one which could never be said in anything other than a disgusted voice.
The most interesting thing about my week was the reaction I got being a man working with really young children. Generally the lower down the education system you go the fewer men there are and in pre-schools they are a very rare thing indeed. A lot of children treat the staff as if they are surrogate mums and in the same way I think I became a surrogate dad to some of them. This really meant that I was a sensible adult who they could be much rougher with. Fortunately I could take things like this and they were generally pretty good at stopping if they went too far. Some children also became a bit obsessive about me and I was pretty much their best buddy for the time I was there. Of course this creates various issues but I made sure I was sensible and ensured I went round all the children and gave none of them any preference.
I hope I might have made a bit of a difference to some of their lives in the short time I was there. It is certain that some of them don’t have a male role model in their lives and hopefully that is what I became. By the end of the week the majority of the children were at least comfortable with my presence, including some of the less certain ones. Maybe I’ve proven to some that men aren’t necessarily scary and have widened their experiences. If I’d have been there longer then I certainly would have achieved this.
Realising the positive effect that having a male role model can have I’ve been thinking that maybe where I ought to be teaching is at the lower end of the scale, in a reception class or at least a year 1/2 class. Plus I do enjoy working with the younger ones so it would be pretty awesome. I’ll have to get some proper experience teaching children of that age but this week might well have made a fairly significant change to my teaching career.
Overall it was a great week, although rather hard work. I had to get used to early mornings again and all the setting up and packing away at either end of the day was really hard work physically. But I seemed to make a good impression on the children and the staff and I got a decent report back which is always nice to read.
In other news, England’s football team are through to the quarter finals of Euro 2012 after beating Sweden and Ukraine. Neither game was particularly easy but we did have some luck, like this goal the Ukraine scored that wasn’t allowed because the officials didn’t think it crossed the line before John Terry kicked it away:
We’re owed a goal like that from a couple of years ago though so it’s only fair! Plus it was offside so shouldn’t have counted anyway. Our quarter final match is against Italy tomorrow night which will be something of a challenge. If we do beat them we have to play our nemesis team, Germany, so either way it seems unlikely we’ll make it to the final.
Over the last few days I have become addicted to the Facebook game “Song Pop”. You have to try and guess which song or artist is playing quicker than your opponent. There’s lots of different genres and I am pretty damn good at most of them I must say. If anyone dares challenge me you can using my username which is “zotwot”. But be warned, I really am quite good.
That’s all for today and I return to the usual simple life this week so I’ll have more than enough time to write lots of blog posts. Stay tuned for all sorts of great things to come!