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Ria Beekman

Intern Teachers Descriptive Report:

My PSIII internship is a very rewarding experience! The teachers at Wilson Middle
School were very welcoming and made sure to let me know that I could come to them with any
questions. Throughout my practicum I have been involved in various activities within the school.
I started out teaching math to two very different grade 6 classes. Both classes consisted of just
fewer than 30 students. The students within the classes came from very diverse backgrounds
and brought in a wide range of learning needs. Some of my students only came to class a few
days a week. This created a challenge for me as these students missed a lot of the material
being taught. When they did show up to class Id check in with them often and Id pair them up
with someone who knew their math or work with them individually. To keep my students
engaged I had to constantly incorporate new and interesting activities within my lesson. Ive
brought in card games, played active games like Simon says where students had to make
angles with their arms and showed relevant videos to help the students focus on the lesson. Ive
also gone around to other classrooms to observe different teaching styles and to see how others
are differentiating the material for their students.
Both of my math classes helped me to continue to improve my classroom management
skills. Ive started a points system where each day a student is assigned to keep track of the
classs behaviour and he/she then decides whether the teacher or the students receive a point.
This made students feel more responsible for their actions! I taught units on Fractions, Percents
and Ratios, Patterns and Angles. (Naming Polygons, Area, Perimeter and Volume and the
beginning of the Transformations unit will be taught during the last part of my practicum).
Within a week or two of the start of practicum I was asked if Id be willing to supervise the
breakfast program every Friday morning. I was more than willing to help out as I really wanted to
get to know more of the staff and the students within the school. I always welcomed the students
to school and said a kind word as they exited the cafeteria. I feel like students need to know that
they have been noticed and that they are cared about. They soon became very used to having
me there on Friday mornings and so weve ended up having some great conversations!
Even though I majored in math, I became very involved in the arts taking place within the
school. I agreed to teach a watercolor class to a group of 26 students from grades 6, 7 and 8.
Ive created a lot of pencil drawings but Ive never tried painting with watercolor prior to this
practicum. Before starting this class I did some research on watercolor, bought my own
watercolor paper and painting set and created some of my own pieces of art so that Id become
familiar with the material. I found out that I really enjoyed this type of art and was happy to be

Ria Beekman
able to encourage these students to try the different techniques to create their own unique piece
of art! I was impressed with some of the work that my students created!
Besides this watercolor class I volunteered to help another grade 6 teacher with the
creation of props for the schools Rumpelstiltskin drama production. Together weve put in many
hours after school to make sure that these props looked realistic and completed on time. Weve
created baskets of berries, an old looking broom, a quill, various different banners and flags just
to name a few. Occasionally Id also take some of this work home to continue on. Once we
came closer to the production date I joined the staff for a drama work bee on a Saturday to help
out with the painting of stage sets. I really enjoyed this day as it showed how awesome and how
very important it is to have a staff that works well together and helps each other out when
necessary even though each teacher has a lot to do individually.
Throughout my practicum Ive made connections with parents by sending home an
introduction letter and updating the class weebly site every week. Ive also called home on
various occasions to check in with how students are doing in school and updating parents on
their progress.
Within a few weeks of the start of practicum the other intern teacher and I started our
PIP project on numeracy. We began by putting together a set of grade specific home strategies
for students and then we went on to build our website as a resource for teachers to go to, to
plan their numeracy units! Weve made sure to align the activities with the Alberta Achievement
Indicators for number sense. We also plan to create a numeracy display to add to our project.
Now that I know my students and have built relationships with them I have fun with them
in class! In previous practicums I felt like I needed to follow my exact lesson plan but now I often
find myself adding and taking away things throughout the lesson based on how my students are
doing. Also, if a student asked why we were learning about something I wouldnt put it off to
explain it in a future lesson but instead Id stop the class and again discuss where wed use
things like angles in our everyday lives! Reading week was great break but by the end of it I just
wanted to get back to the class and see my students again!