Author Archives: Ross Bell

Structural Inequality Seminar

Last week i took part in my first fully interactive experience at Dundee University. I found this exercise very engaging and enlightening. The seminar began with an introduction from Brenda Keatch, a former primary teacher who operated across Scotland and is now using the experience she gained to work as a lecturer at the university.

The activity started with the classroom being separated into groups of around 5. My group consisted of people I had already spoken to and become friendly with in the early stages of the course, this helped us feel comfortable and confident with the task at hand. Each group was then handed an envelope with resources inside and asked to produce an idea/item which would’ve been useful to us in these early stages of university life. We decided a parking badge would have been welcomed with open arms due to the extortionate prices of parking close to the campus and we used our abundance of coloured paper, scissors and pens to make ourselves the parking badges.

Each group was then asked to present their idea to the others. Our group gained a large amount of praise from Brenda but the others she seemed to be very harsh on. It was at this point that members of my group and I realised that the other groups had received very limited resources in comparison to us and therefore were up against it from the beginning and the praise we were receiving was staged for metaphorical purposes. This left us feeling sympathetic for other groups who didn’t have everything going for them like we did.

The lesson behind the seminar was that each student in a class has different levels of skills, resources, levels of support and mental capacity for learning therefore we as teachers must divide our attentiveness and attention intelligently to those who need it, maintaining a balance of progression as best we can for the class as a unit. Each child needs different styles of teaching to reach their potential and it is essential that we motivate them and ensure they are doing so, not only academically, but in every walk of life.

 

Why teaching?

Having grown up with my mother studying and becoming a primary teacher i have seen firsthand how much hard work, determination and patience the job takes. I admire her greatly for both the effort she puts into her work and the passion she shows for what she does, this has inspired me to go on to do the same. A teachers role in their student’s life expands way outside of the classroom and they become responsible for the physical well-being and mental health of each child they encounter. The main reason i became a teacher however is because I believe the job would be incredibly rewarding. Seeing pupils develop and come into their own under my care and my teachings would not only be more than enough motivation to go into work every day but also enough for me to enjoy and look forward to it. I look forward to being a carer and mentor for children throughout my career and hopefully impact all of their lives positively.

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.

The ePortfolio in the form of this WordPress blog allows you to pull in material from other digital sources:

You can pull in a YouTube video:

You can pull in a Soundcloud audio track:

You can upload an image or pull one in from Flickr or any other image sharing site.

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

You can just about pull in anything that you think will add substance and depth to your writing.