Archive for the ‘Teaching’ Category

The Fall of Mr. M

June 11, 2010

This artist’s impression of the former French teacher known as ‘Mr. M’ was drawn at the peak of his career by some of his year 9 students. (Bless ’em)

The PGCE teacher training course I was on… Didn’t Work Out™ .

And so here I am: a half-digested excretion of the further education system, with time on my hands. I’ve tried washing the stuff off but  it seems to be sticking, so this is a good opportunity to bust out the old writin’ fingers once again; fragile, atrophied twiglets that they are after half a year of no use… Not to worry though – plenty of opportunity to practice, and this blog is getting back up and running!

If I had knocked out an entry over the past six months it would have been eye-strainingly awful. The PGCE course is a ravenous beast and time is its very favourite chow, as a result any entry would have been dull, rushed and full of me bitching about not getting any sleep.  However, I wouldn’t want you to think you’ve missed out on anything, so here’s a quick summary of my life since December:

December – Avatar rocks me ’till I’m blue in the face, then I go on my own journey to exotic climes: Thailand. I wage war upon the native curry and beer populations, prevent my cousin from stealing Thai babies as part of her nefarious scheme to gain citizenship, and, less entertainingly, witness a murder at a beach rave.

January – At university, learning new and exciting teaching super powers.

February – Teaching in a new school. Powers begin to wane. Kryptonite clearly present in the canteen meals.

March/April/May – Realise problem might not be Kryptonite. Failing to eat; to sleep; the course.

June – End of the line. Punctuate, and press life’s Enter key. Start new paragraph.

Total number of creative writing ideas : 0

Students who have learned French: 110


The last little thing I can be proud of, at least. And now we’re up to date. To expand just a little, I was struggling to keep up with paperwork, and students weren’t getting enough learning out of the material I was presenting. Hard as I might try, I couldn’t seem to rectify these issues satisfactorily enough for the course supervisors, and with this being a 66% timetable, it was decided that with only 3 weeks to go of the course, a) I would not be able to make the necassary progress and b) even if I scraped through, it wouldn’t be beneficial for my health in the long run, and I’d probably not pass the NQT year anyway.  Joyous, right? If I can’t be a good teacher, then I don’t think I should be a teacher at all, so for better or worse, Mr. M the French Teacher is no more. Rising from the ashes… who knows?

Let’s find out, shall we?  😉


Meanwhile, In The Real World…

July 13, 2009

In the midst of all my stupid ideas and rambling, I’d forgotten to mention I’d found a school to do my three days’ French class observation. Well, happily I did, and today I had my first day at the Manor School in York!

‘Observation’ is a bit of a misleading term though, as from the moment the classes started I was giving presentations about myself in French, answering questions, helping with activitites etc,  so it was a lot of fun. Being on the other side of the education fence is fascinating, though being referred to as ‘sir’ is strange. Very strange.

Tomorrow I also get a free reign with all the  Modern Languages department’s resources and intranet, and while you probably aren’t jumping out of your seat in excitement at the sound of that, for a languages person it’s pretty cool 😉

On the writing front, the other day I sat down and wrote a thousand words of a novel that comes three books further down the line from the series that Nocturn will be a part of. It felt like a glimpse of ‘what is yet to come’, and it was a stirring kind of feeling knowing that there’s still so much to be unwravelled!

Also went to see the film Brüno earlier this evening. There are definitely certain… images… I wish I could scrub from my mind, but it kept the laughs coming. His line to an Al-Qaeda chief that Bin Laden should shave his beard because ‘he looks like a dirty wizard’ was cracking. Borat was a better character, and I wouldn’t ever watch this a second time, but it was worth one viewing.