So… today’s lesson did not go as planned. At all. I had my lovely little Phys Ed lesson all ready to go and as I am walking the students to the gym – horror! There is already another class in there! *silent scream*
After a quick discussion with my co-op teacher, we decided to take the students outside for Phys Ed because they simply need that chance to run around and burn off energy. However, that meant that most of my lesson had to be scrapped (or recycled, I’ll say, as I can hopefully use it in the future – optimism!) and I would have to fly by the seat of my pants with 23 hyper Grade 3 students in an even larger and more intimidating space than the gym… the great outdoors.
I managed to sort of stick to the first half of my lesson (with some on-the-spot modifications) and taught students the two different whistle cues (1 long whistle blow = freeze, two short whistle blow = 10 jumping jacks, which was originally supposed to be wall push ups), which they followed for the most part. Instead of doing different movements between the lines in a gym floor, I had the students do the movements while running to touch a specific object on the playground and coming back. We only managed about 4 rounds of this.
My co-op then suggested that I use the perimeter of gravel around one of the play structures as a border for a game of Freeze tag, so quickly gave the students this instruction. After that, with my co-op’s guidance, I let the students have free time for the remainder of the class.
In all honesty, I was pretty disheartened that my lesson did not go according to plan and that I had to relinquish a lot of my independence and confidence because I was put on the spot. My co-op helped me in this lesson more than I would have liked, but as a pre-intern, I don’t think I was fully prepared to have to completely improvise a lesson last minute.
As for practical knowledge and experience though, it was really helpful for me to see that sometimes your plans go completely awry and you, as a teacher, have to think on your feet to come up with a new plan of attack. As a person who loves organization, routine, and sticking to the plan, this lesson was very difficult for me personally. While this lesson wasn’t my best by far, I think that it was realistic and I learned something that no amount of planning could have helped me to prepare for. This is why I love pre-internship; you get to learn all of these real-life lessons that no ECS class can possibly teach.
I have no doubt that I will look back on this experience and laugh someday, especially at how upset I was about how it went. You learn the most from the lessons that flop. So I guess, in a way, this WAS my best lesson yet.
Until next time,