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Professional Competencies after 3rd Field Experience at Westmount High School

Competency 1: To act as a professional inheritor, critic and interpreter of


knowledge or culture when teaching students.

At Westmount High I was able to further my development with regards to the first competency. I
had to understand the subject and topics that were going to be taught when teaching the ethics
program for grade 8, grade 10 and grade 11s. After becoming knowledgeable about the subjects
and topics within the curriculum, I then evaluated and thought of different ways to make
appropriate and meaningful links to the students' lives. I as well understood that teaching the
ERC program involves discussing sensitive issues at times. Some issues discussed were social
issues, religious beliefs and existential questions. It was therefore important to explain my own
background to students as well explaining my own limitations while teaching the material as I
may not have experienced the same things they have. One aspect I must continue developing is
establishing links to the students' culture through learning activities. For the future I must think
of more creative ways to perhaps draw direct links to the students own personal background and
where they come from.

Level: Thorough

Competency 2: To communicate clearly in the language of instruction, both


orally and in writing, using correct grammar, in various contexts related to
teaching.

My field experiences have definitely allowed me to develop my professional identity in how I


express myself as a teaching professional. Whether that be through dealing with students in and
outside the classroom or emailing them about school related activities, I have acted as a
professional in all scenarios. Moreover, I have acted professionally when interacting with the rest
of the staff in a school setting. The area I must work on the most is correcting the students
spelling or grammar in assessments. Even though I am an ethics teacher, it is very important that
I still pay attention to this aspect by making sure students are writing correctly and not making
fundamental mistakes.

Level: Acceptable

Competency 3: To develop teaching/learning situations that are appropriate to


the students concerned and the subject content with a view to developing the
competencies targeted in the programs of study.

The first time I had truly practiced this competency was during my third field experience. Taking
over my CT's class required that I build lessons and activities that followed the curriculum and
enhanced student learning. Thus I had to begin building unit plans for the term. These plans were
then evaluated by my CT to assess if they were appropriate and followed suit with the
curriculum. I as well had to build activities and assessments within my unit that would help
further the students learning and give them a chance to manifest what they had learned.

Level: Thorough

Competency 5: To evaluate student progress in learning the subject content and


mastering the related competencies.

Compared to other programs and subjects, the ERC program's evaluation methods are very much
different. One of the main differences is that there are no examinations. The best way I found to
check students learning was by asking them to read out certain facts we just learned, re-explain
the main learning points of the lesson, or to explain why it was important to learn the material
from the lesson. Another effective method to evaluate students' ERC was to ask students guiding
questions that would have them reflect and express themselves. Furthermore, building
assessments that tie in with the goal of the unit is the only way a teacher in ERC can evaluate if
students have learned what has been taught in the unit. A valuable lesson I learned from my CT
is to always keep in touch with parents when students are slipping behind, such as sending back
parent-teacher forms when students are acting out in class or not completing assignments.

Level: Thorough

Competency 6: To plan, organize and supervise a class in such a way as to


promote students' learning and social development.

Throughout this semester I learned various ways I could go about maintaining a positive setting
within the classroom. The main thing I now understand is that students need a regular routine
and a set of expectations when they walk into the classroom. At Westmount this included:
walking into class, collecting their notebooks from their class bins, taking a seat, waiting for
attendance to be taken, question and answer period, and then the lesson begins. I as well believe I
developed my skills of identifying if there were hindrances interrupting the smooth running of
the classroom. These situations could have been for one, if class discussions were getting out of
hand, and if so, order had to be restored. Another situation was if a student was being
inappropriate they would be asked to go outside and collect themselves before they can return to
the classroom. With all this being said, this aspect still needs practice and may require new
methods in a new school setting.

Level: Advanced
Competency 7: To adapt his or her teaching to the needs and characteristics of
students with learning disabilities, social maladjustments or handicaps.

Throughout my third field experience I was able to work with various students with learning or
social problems. I tried my best to pay attention to international students or students who had
different learning preferences. I would check if they had trouble understanding certain problems,
and if so I would intervene one-on-one to try and re-explain the notes on the board or the activity
planned out. It was very important that I make every lesson different in some way, either by
having a video/audio presentation, copying notes or providing images related to the material. I
also worked with a grade 11 one-on-one. We worked on his organizational skills and his general
success in all courses. Through these meetings we were able to apply different techniques to help
him succeed and stay on top of things. One technique that ended up being very helpful was
setting a study schedule for him to follow.

Level: Thorough

Competency 8: To integrate information and communications technologies (ict)


in the preparation and delivery of teaching/learning activities and for
instructional management and professional development purposes.

Throughout my third field experience I was able to learn different ways to use technology in the
classroom that would lead to the success of students. Besides the basic example, such as using
the smart board for lessons to help show notes, videos or images, I always gave students the
option of using their phones for research purposes when doing a class activity. Moreover, when
handing out assessment guidelines to students, I always gave the option to hand in assignments
in any format they wish, such as a written copy, a video or audio presentation. However, I do
consider myself to be lacking heavily in my knowledge with regards to technology, and how I
can implement it more within the classroom. Technology can definitely add a new interest level
to some lessons and student engagement in class.

Level: Acceptable

Competency 9: To cooperate with school staff, parents, partners in the


community and students in pursuing the educational objectives of the school.

Some aspects in which I excelled in this competency would be aiding with coaching the school's
volleyball team and helping with school driven projects. For the volleyball team I helped with
practices, travelling with the team to games, and helping students one on one with practicing
their skills surrounding the game. The main thing I made sure of was that the students were
having fun and learning new ways to play a game they may have never played before. For school
driven projects, I helped organized and lead the school exhibition on "Ending Violence against
Woman." We set up two classrooms side by side with various art pieces and student projects that
helped exemplify the purpose of the exhibition. I had to put time aside and make sure the
classrooms was decorated and looked nice for all those who wanted to come visit the exhibition.

Level: Advanced

Competency 10: To cooperate with members of the teaching team in carrying


out tasks involving the development and evaluation of the competencies
targeted in the programs of study, taking into account the students concerned.

At Westmount High during my third field experience I worked with the staff to figure out
different ways we could help the students. I attended various meetings throughout my time at
Westmount where the staff would discuss different grade levels and students who were at risk of
not succeeding. It was very interesting attending all these meetings and I was able to see first
hand how the school would go about solving these problems. It was great to see what techniques
they would use to help these students. I as well worked with the "Ethos" group at Westmount,
which consisted of the Ethics, Arts, Drama, Pop and Music Department. We would have
meetings as a department on how the "Ethos" group could be the spirit of the school and help the
students express themselves in a positive way. An example of that would be the exhibition we set
up for the "Ending of violence against Woman." However every school will have new systems in
place, therefore I must be ready to adapt in the new situation I am placed in.

Level: Thorough

Competency 11: To engage in professional development individually and with


others.

Throughout my third field experience at Westmount High I was constantly looking at new ways
to improve my teaching style. Whether that be through evaluations or general advice, I took
constructive criticism very well as it aided my development as a teacher. Various ways I
improved my style of teaching was by asking more guiding questions to the students, which
ended up being an improvement from just presenting the material and moving on with the lesson.
I realized that these guiding questions helped the students' learning and kept them engaged in the
lesson. I as well learned to improve on my organizational skills; I originally struggled in this
aspect at the beginning of my FE3, but slowly improved throughout my time at Westmount.
Going into my final field experience, I must come to class more prepared from the get go.

Level: Thorough
Competency 12: To demonstrate ethical and responsible professional behavior
in the performance of his or her duties.

Throughout my entire FE3, and especially when my CT left me in charge of her classroom, I was
able to handle the situation on my own with success. There was not one moment where I felt as if
I could not handle the situation. I am confident with the experiences I have had so far that I can
handle any situation on my own as professional. There was one incident I had with a student
however, where the student misinterpreted what I said to her, she became very angry and
unpleasant towards me. I immediately sought my CT for advice. With my CT's guidance, we
were able to rectify the situation, and everything was back to normal. This situation demonstrates
my willingness to seek out guidance if I believe I am in a situation I cannot fully handle on my
own.

Level: Advanced