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November 14, 2016

"And then there were two ... placements completed!" Siobhan Daly, Post Primary student

As a PME in post primary education student, I find it difficult to believe that I have successfully completed my second school placement period. As a student teacher, school placements initially seem quite daunting but always turn out to be enjoyable. I can attribute this to the support from my peers- the lesson plans never seem quite so bad when you can appreciate that many of your friends are in the same situation! I thoroughly enjoyed my placement experience.

As it was my first time in a mixed school I was relatively apprehensive, but I really enjoyed teaching both boys and girls. Working in such a friendly, relaxed environment allowed me to incorporate many of the teaching strategies that we have encountered on our course with relative ease. Students particularly appreciated my incorporation of technology into the classroom, and I can attribute my confidence in this area to my lectures on technology in education with Dr Barry Ryan. Given that we had already been introduced to fun educational tools like “Kahoot” in lectures, I felt extremely confident incorporating them into the classroom. As predicted, students thoroughly enjoyed the tasks and some commented that it really was a fun way of learning vocabulary.

Many students also enjoyed the opportunity to become competitive with each other in the classroom and relished the chance to lead the scoreboard! Similarly, using Online Hangman miraculously enabled students to actually enjoy learning the correct spelling of new French words!   Bringing these enjoyable learning methods to the classroom meant that students had fun while learning- some students even commented that they looked forward to coming to my classes. In future, I would like to expand on this by creating class blogs and using more videos to encourage a love of French learning. Other teachers in the school were equally interested in the technology and I was delighted to share my nuggets of wisdom.

Having finished placement, I am now concentrating on what to focus my thesis on. I am interested in a broad number of educational topics- particularly technology. While the prospect of a thesis is surely rather daunting, I can relax in the knowledge of the excellent support that Hibernia College will provide for me. I have never written a thesis before, but I have received great material to prepare for the submission of a thesis proposal. In the meantime, I look forward to deciding on a thesis topic and completing research on it.


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