Teaching Practicum: First round of observation

#throwback


The lecturer that observed me was very tolerable, and alhamdulillah he even asked for my permission before the observations were done! 🙂  Dr.Syed was a very polite man and has interesting views on psychology and education. So there it goes, the observation was delayed from the middle of March, and due to examinations and school break, I could only be observed the week after the school break. I was super nervous with the lesson plans (in which of course you have to prepare on every single lesson). He wanted to observe me twice in a week! The first teaching observation by supervisor It happened on Tuesday. The day before, he texted me at 7.00 p.m., asking for permission to observe me on the next day and on Friday. Without any arguments, I just agreed. (It’s better to settle up everything in a week rather than being nervous for a long time, isn’t it?).

I cracked my head that night, thinking of what to teach on the next day’s class, the form 1 students. Since we’re still in the topic of ‘Safe and Sound’, I decided to teach about preposition, using a song, and recap students’ knowledge by writing down on the whiteboard about types of prepositions that they have already known. And lastly, I asked my students to create sentences using prepositions based on the pictures given. They had to work in a group…

That afternoon, I was so nervous and kept looking at my phone. Getting worried and uneasy. I looked at my phone again; it’s 12.25 p.m. It’s time to get into the class… But where is he?

“No whatsapp from him? Where is he? Is he coming or not…?”, said my inner thoughts.

Finally, I decided to call him instead and asked for his location. He’s in the school’s office. So I quickly met him there and walked him to the class. Luckily, my student had already put a table with a chair at the back of the class as I told him before. The students were so well-behaved and responsive on that day. I was kind of surprise actually! And I just continued the lesson as usual. I still feel really bad because I think that lesson was not so good for me. However, I still got good feedback from my lecturer. He wrote his comments on a piece of paper about my preparation, presentation, his evaluation, as well as other matters.

After the class, we walked together heading to the school canteen. Everyone including teachers and students kept staring at us. I think they were too curious, wanting to know whether this guy was a Malaysian or not. It’s kind of funny knowing the fact that my supervisor is a Malay guy, but since he moved a lot throughout his life; studied in US, taught college students there, moved to Singapore, Brunei, and lastly he decided to return to Malaysia. Even his accent doesn’t really sounds like a Malay person. No matter what, I love having a conversation with him.

Photo from : Google. That looks yummeh!

We ordered two glasses of Teh tarik and he started sharing about things that he knows. Since he is a psychology and philosophy lecturer, he evaluated more on the interactions and learning among students rather than the language itself. Make sure you make use of the whiteboard as well when you students answer your questions (because this will be evaluated as well, and it is good for visual learners- to see what they need to know). Have some interaction with the students as well through questions and answering sessions so that it is not just going to be a boring lecture. Let them talk… Another way to let your students think is by setting up group works. This will inculcate teamwork among the students and having interactions with their friends rather than a passive interaction (teacher teach and students listen). The methods might have changed nowadays. It is more towards student-centred. 😉 Since he is a psychology and philosophy lecturer, he evaluated more on the interactions and learning among students rather than the language itself. Make sure you make use of the whiteboard as well when your students answer your questions (because this will be evaluated as well, and it is good for visual learners- to see what they need to know). Write down their answers so that everyone can see them. Have some interaction with the students as well through questions and answering sessions so that it is not just going to be a boring lecture. Let them talk… Another way to let your students think is by setting up group works. This will inculcate teamwork among the students and having interactions with their friends rather than a passive interaction (teacher teach and students listen). The methods might have changed nowadays. It is more towards student-centred. 😉

Neuro-Linguistic Psychology

Photo from: Google

He talked a lot about the NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Psychology) in teaching. It’s about how people use psychological approach in changing people’s behaviours and attracting others’ attention. It is also about how our brain works that affects all communication and behaviour, and also how people perceive things around them. Instead of good teaching materials, it is vital for teachers to note that teaching approaches and influencing students’ behaviour is also a very important key to a successful teaching and learning. Even in the business field, people invest a lot for the NLP courses. He also said that teaching is not just about having the knowledge, but also having the skill of making people learn something. Hence, it is important for teachers to create comfort (perhaps by providing less threatening environment, or a simple example is food), and provide safety. Dr.Syed even suggested me to watch a movie entitled He also said that teaching is not just about having the knowledge, but also having the skill of making people learn something. Hence, it is important for teachers to create comfort (perhaps by providing less threatening environment, or a simple example is food), and provide safety. Another tip suggested by him is to use storytelling in attracting students’ attention.

Source : Google

He said; “You don’t necessarily have to shout to attract your students’ attention. You may use storytelling. What you have to do is just go to one corner of the classroom, lower down your voice, and wait until they are quiet. Or, you may ask them; ‘Do you want to hear a story?’, then you start telling them stories, a brief one. After you managed to capture their attention, then you may continue with your lesson. That is how you sustain their attention in class. Some teachers just waste their energy by yelling at their students, and that is not effective at all.”

After we finished our teh tarik, I walked him to his car. We still hadn’t finished talking about interesting topics on psychology and teaching. I told him I adore Syed Naquib Al-Attas’ writings and thoughts on modern philosophy as well as Islamic thoughts. Though I did not join the philosophy classes and instead having a minor in IT, I started to have interest in his thoughts after I bought a book with my Intro to Fiqh lecturer. Dr.Syed even suggested me to watch a movie entitled

Dr.Syed even suggested me to watch a movie entitled Summerhill. It was quite surprising to know that my students still remembered the preposition song I played in the class during my final week at school. There you go- the power of music! Owyeah!! I do hope that this so-called experience sharing is beneficial for future teachers or real teachers out there. We have brain, then use it! 😉

All the best!

#teachwith ❤

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