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May 23, 2016

Update from Jacqueline Halpin, PME Primary student

In the words of Frank Sinatra ‘And now the end is near and so I face the final curtain’. Yes, you are correct in guessing I am now at the final hurdle of the Masters in Primary School Teaching. I have come from ‘butterflies in my stomach’ on my first teaching practice to now having my advanced school placement complete and my thesis submitted. You can almost feel the exhale of relief as you read that sentence I am sure!

I would have never thought two years ago that I would be sitting here now with so much accomplished by the Summer of 2016. I cannot falsely claim that it has been an easy road because believe me it has not - but who in life succeeds without hard work? If you are just starting your Masters in teaching this year or you are on your first teaching practice or starting your first assignment, you need to take into serious consideration: Am I going to fully commit to working hard for the next two years? If your answer is yes, then you are already on the path to success.

Two years ago as I was seated nervously in the large lecture hall not sure of what was ahead of me, I thought to myself ‘…this is it…the first day of achieving my dream was commencing…I have two choices: run for the hills as this course sounds so intense and you are giving up two years of your life, or put your life on hold for two years so that you can live a life in the future that you have always dreamed of living!’ So that’s exactly what I did!

I whole heartedly immersed myself into a life of schedules, planning, studying and research. On my ‘time out’ I found myself following educational boards on Pinterest or gaining ideas from other professionals such as Múinteoir Valerie on the wonders of teaching where classrooms can be transferred into a world of creativity and exploration. In the words of a familiar expression to ‘eat, breathe and sleep’ teaching is an accurate description of my very existence these past two years.

As I sit here now on this Summers evening, my kitchen-table no longer crammed with TP resources, lesson plans, a thesis folder bursting with research and empty mugs of coffee… I can smile and say I did it…the end is near…but the beginning of a wonderful adventure is about to begin and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

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