Health and Wellbeing

The main messages sent in Suzanne Zeedyk and John Carnochas videos, was all to do with the importance of early brain development in children. Both videos explained that babies are born prematurely compared to most mammals. Because of this baby’s brains are not only more fragile but also more flexible. They are not fully developed, and they continue to develop not only because of genetic codes but they also develop based on the relationships and environments they are presented with. As teachers we need to take into consideration that there are consequences to the brains we are asking children to develop. The pathways the brain makes in early years, will be the pathways that continue onto adulthood. If a child lives with domestic violence where there is a lot of shouting their brain has to develop to cope with those situations. Their brain is constantly monitoring when the next threat comes from, so they can’t have learn about a lot of other things in the world as they are too busy looking for threat. Cortisol: helps to cope with stress, if have this hormone all the time it starts to swamp the brain with the stress hormone. Brain is almost drowning in stress hormone.

We have to carefully consider the environment we present to children because their brains will develop in response to this environment. As Suzanna Zeedyk says in the video: “If we are giving them a world that is calm and predictable then their brain is developing in this and they will carry on this motorway system into adulthood and expect everything to be calm and predictable.”  Children need consistency in their life, and their only chance to have that may be in the classroom. If children haven’t built relationships it can have a very negative impact on them, they can then struggle to build relationships all throughout their life.

As teachers we need to consider what kind of brains we are asking children to develop and what kind of motorway systems we want them to develop. The pathways that are created in their brains need to give them the ability to make decisions, communicate with others and also empathise with others.

Resource Allocation Workshop – Reflection

Our first workshop for MA1 Education withing the Values: self, society and the professions took place on Tuesday the 19th of September. It was one of the most confusing workshops to start off with but once we understood the reason behind the workshop it was a very good lesson, and a good way to bring the message of the workshop across.

We were all split into different groups and given an envelope with resources. We were all asked to open up our envelopes and see what was inside. My group had an elastic band, some blue tac, one sticky note, two paper clips and a pen. Everyone else around us had more, and one group had much more than anyone else. The task was to create something that would help 1st year students like ourselves. With such limited resources our group decided to create a map with all the places to go during your freshers week, it also gave you different challenges to complete, such as joining a society.

Once we were all finished we had to present what we had produced to Derek. This is when it became clear that Derek was treating each group differently and unfairly, when the first group was presenting to everyone else they received a lot of praise from Derek, as he went round everyone’s groups the amount of resources the groups had lessened as did Derek’s attention to what they were saying.

Because our group was the one that received the least amount of praise and had the smallest amount of resources we became really frustrated, I became quite confused and started thinking we had done something wrong. when Derek started paying more attention to his phone than what we had to say that’s when we all became quite agitated. The confidence of the first group who had received most resources and praise grew throughout the workshop, while the last group who received no praise, no attention even became less confident and also quite frustrated.

Once everyone was finished Derek explained that his performance was to demonstrate that in our profession we will come across children who have less and children who have more, from different cultures and backgrounds. How much children have, where they are from or what they believe in should not affect the way teachers treat them, they should all receive an equal amount of support and praise. Children shouldn’t be limited because of resources, but should all be treated equally, receiving support so that they can grow in their learning but also grow in themselves. Our job as teachers is to help every child reach their full potential.

After everyone in the workshop understood the reasoning behind the input, he asked if anyone had noticed what was happening. My group had noticed quite quickly but the group;s that had received more resources were too focused on completing the task, not taking into consideration that they could share their resources, and help those who had less.

Overall, I think this was a really effective way of demonstrating that not all children will come into our classrooms with the same upbringing, with the same resources or the same background and as teachers we must not create a gap between children and treat them differently, we should treat them all equally and give them the same opportunities.


Welcome to your WordPress eportfolio

Welcome to your ePortfolio. This is where you will document and share your professional thoughts and experiences over the course of your study at the University of Dundee and beyond that when you begin teaching. You have the control over what you want to make public and what you would rather keep on a password protected page.

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Teacher, Lorraine Lapthorne conducts her class in the Grade Two room at the Drouin State School, Drouin, Victoria

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