Personal Reflection On Placement

Theme 1: Creating an enjoyable and stimulating learning environment for all
One major area where my philosophy didn’t quite match up with my experience on placement was creating an enjoyable and stimulating learning environment for all due to the various aspects that feed into teaching and learning. There have been a number of incidences that have stood out, both for positive and negative reasons. My critical reflection (appendix b) related to low level disruption and drew upon one particular incident to highlight the issue. But for the purpose of this essay I will focus on a different issue. Within placement the year eleven sit their GCSE RE exam a year early so have already completed a GCSE course. This is a topic of debate that has continued
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This is something that was touched upon in the previous theme but its impact both on my teaching and learning is something that needs to be looked at more closely. It has had such an impact on my experiences at placement one because of the opportunities it offer students to explore their ideas and complex topics in a space that is supportive and open to different interpretations, where discussion and debate can freely happen. Discussion and debate can only take place within a classroom when it stays within the parameters of respect, without respect students cannot fully explore and develop balanced thought processes. Centring learning in experience is something that has been explored and promoted by many educationalist and pedagogies (Dewey, 1916, Bruner, 1976 & Kirschner, Sweller, and Clark, 2006). Holt (2015) highlights that “students should be at the centre of the learning and teaching” (121) and outlines five bridges between learning and teaching. Within my personal philosophy I have included and continue to strive for two of those bridges, “Bridge 1: with children’s own experiences…Bridge 5: with other subjects” (Holt, 2015, 121). Looking back at how I wanted to teach and what I wanted my students to learn has a clear constructivist ethos, I mention …show more content…
Vygotsky’s ideas about providing students with scaffolding that builds knowledge, building those structure properly means knowledge can be transferred and explored by students. Bruner mentioned “…education is not to impart knowledge, but instead to facilitate a child 's thinking and problem solving skills” (1961, cited in McLeod, 2012a). This process of facilitating a child’s thinking and problem solving skills can only be strengthened by the study of a topic across a number of subjects. Subjects that appear to work well with RE and religious topics in general are drama, where stories can be explored; this approach has a massive benefit for those kinesics learners. History; which can give historical context and English; which can help students understand why and how stories and accounts can be recorded and the effect language can have (Holt, 2015, 131). One example of this cross-curricular approach to teaching witnessed within placement A was a poem competition run by Chester Cathedral where student across all key stages were asked to write a poem relating to Christian teaching. The competition was led by the English department and the poems and art work were completed within English lessons, with the support of the RE

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